Heidelberg achieves targets, closes FY 23-24 successfully

All set for drupa with technological innovations 

The new Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 106 of the Peak Performance Generation will be unveiled at drupa 2024.

Heidelberg says it is well prepared for the upcoming drupa trade fair from 28 May to 7 June. This is shown by the preliminary figures for the past financial year 2023-2024, with which the company has achieved its own forecast. Despite challenging economic and geopolitical conditions as well as cost pressure on materials, energy and personnel, Heidelberg succeeded in keeping sales stable at around 2.4 billion Euros (previous year: 2.435 billion Euros) and the adjusted EBITDA margin at 7.2%. 

Free cash flow reached around 50 million Euros, whereby no special items, such as from the sale of non-operating assets, were included in the reporting year. This means that the highest free cash flow in over 10 years was achieved in the past financial year if the free cash flows of previous years had been adjusted for the special items contained therein. These figures underline the successful implementation of the value creation program, which has further improved the company’s financial resilience.

CEO Ludwin Monz says: “We were able to achieve our financial year targets in a difficult economic environment. Heidelberg’s financial performance was solid. Our value creation program is an important building block in positioning Heidelberg for the future.”

Value creation program 

As part of the value creation program, Heidelberg has identified more than 250 measures to increase productivity and strengthen the financial base, which are being implemented on an ongoing basis. In the 2023/2024 financial year, the measures initiated at an early stage successfully compensated for the considerable negative impact on earnings from declining production volumes and rising costs. Measures to specifically optimize net working capital also had a positive impact on free cash flow.

Tania von der Goltz, CFO of Heidelberg, says: “The resilient development of profitability and free cash flow are proof of our financial discipline and our ability to deliver reliable results even in a difficult environment. In a financial year that was characterized by a decline in orders across the industry, we achieved our targets and met our forecasts thanks to the value creation program we initiated at an early stage.”

Incoming orders were also solid in the past 2023/2024 financial year. Although this was around 6 percent down on the previous year, it developed better than the industry average thanks to Heidelberg’s good market position. After a weaker third quarter (508 million Euros), the situation improved significantly in the fourth quarter with incoming orders of just under 600 million Euros. This positive development was driven by strong business in Asia, particularly in China.

Innovations at drupa – broad customer base as a strength

Heidelberg is preparing for a successful drupa trade fair with technological innovations that support print shops with their biggest challenges. Automation and digitalization of the value chain as well as solutions for more resource-efficient production are the focus in both of the company’s segments. Innovative products in the field of offset, digital and flexo printing, supplemented by collaborative robotics for the post-processing of print products, will demonstrate the company’s forward-looking orientation at the upcoming trade fair. Heidelberg will rely even more heavily on its broad and established customer base as well as its globally organized and industry-leading sales and service for the future success of the company in order to profitably shape growth ambitions in new market segments.

In 2024, we are looking at full recovery and growth-led investment in Indian printing

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. It created the category of privately owned B2B print magazines in the country. And by its diversification in packaging, (Packaging South Asia), food processing and packaging (IndiFoodBev) and health and medical supply chain and packaging (HealthTekPak), and its community activities in training, research, and conferences (Ipp Services, Training and Research) the organization continues to create platforms that demonstrate the need for quality information, data, technology insights and events.

India is a large and tough terrain and while its book publishing and commercial printing industry have recovered and are increasingly embracing digital print, the Indian newspaper industry continues to recover its credibility and circulation. The signage industry is also recovering and new technologies and audiences such as digital 3D additive printing, digital textiles, and industrial printing are coming onto our pages. Diversification is a fact of life for our readers and like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

India is one of the fastest growing economies in nominal and real terms – in a region poised for the highest change in year to year expenditure in printing equipment and consumables. Our 2024 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock – to emphasize your visibility and relevance to your customers and turn potential markets into conversations.

– Naresh Khanna

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