ABS Moving Closer to the Customers

19.08.2004

ABS’ first six months of 2004 have been characterized by the process of making the organization more efficient and increasing its competitiveness. This has been done for example by rationalization, moving the sales resources closer to the customers, ...

... merging the ABS and Pumpex brand and focusing on customers in the pulp and paper industry, globally.

For the business area as a whole, the inflow of orders increased by 4 percent during this period. Net sales amounted to SEK 1,374 million (1,380), an increase of 1 percent.

ABS Interim Report, January-June 2004

The inflow of orders rose in the water and wastewater segment, while it fell for building services and industry. For the business area as a whole, the inflow of orders increased by 4 percent after adjustment for the effects of exchange rate movements.

Net sales amounted to SEK 1,374 million (1,380), an increase of 1 percent after adjustment for the effects of exchange rate movements. Operating earnings amounted to SEK 69 million (100). Earnings were adversely affected by the product mix in the period.

ABS has enhanced its internal efficiency by rationalization in a number of different areas, resulting in improved profitability in recent years.

In order to increase its competitiveness and rate of geographical expansion, ABS will change its sales organization. The measures include implementation of a new, geographically based organization, which involves the sales resources being moved nearer to the customers, and an expansion of the organization in Asia. The marketing activities in the wastewater area that are pursued today under the ABS and Pumpex trademarks will be concentrated on the ABS brand and a single sales channel, which means that the parallel sales organizations in Sweden, France, Germany and the USA will be merged.

A sales company will be formed focusing on customers in the pulp and paper industry globally. The measures will create better conditions for increasing organic growth at the same time as they are expected to bring an annual net saving of SEK 30-40 million, whereof the main part is expected by 2005. The cost of the measures is expected to amount to SEK 50-70 million and will be charged to earnings for the second half-year.

Source: Sulzer Ltd.

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