The Wilo Group has once again completed a successful financial year. The turnover for 2018 exceeded that of the previous year for the ninth time in a row, and showed a strong 6.2 percent increase to €1.46 billion after currency adjustment.
“In the face of all geopolitical challenges, we have managed to remain on a growth course through consistent implementation of our digital transformation, the expansion of our multilateral partnerships and networks, and an intensified globalisation strategy”, explained Oliver Hermes, CEO of Wilo SE. In particular, Wilo recorded excellent growth in Korea, India, and the Near and Middle East, as well as in Eastern Europe – especially Poland. “We are strategically set up for the long-term and are well-positioned in economic terms, giving us plenty of reasons to have an optimistic view of the future”, concluded Mr. Hermes. The operating profit (EBIT) of €91.9 million remained below that of the previous year due to investment in the digital transformation, strongly-increased raw material prices, and costs related to future-proofing reorganisation measures.
Significant investments for strategic location development and digital transformation implementation
Wilo Group investments remained at a record level: “In the past year we invested nearly €155 million, primarily on building a modern, efficient company infrastructure, representing an increase of 24 percent on last year’s investment”, explained Mr. Hermes further. “We have invested more than €560 million over the past five years. In doing so, we have built a strong foundation for accelerated, profitable growth.” The most visible sign of this investment is the complete reconstruction of the company headquarters in Dortmund. The company will be moving into the Smart Factory this year, and will commence production there at the beginning of 2020. Relocation to the new office complex will follow in January 2020. The Wilo Group stands for future-oriented, innovative products and system solutions. Research and development have traditionally been of high importance in the company. For this reason, €66.3 million was invested in research and development in the past financial year, including in the implementation of the digital transformation at product level. “As part of our ‘Ambition 2025’ corporate strategy, we are carrying out extensive, ongoing investment activities. Wilo is realising its digital transformation across the three dimensions of Products & Solutions, Processes, and Business Models”, explained Mr. Hermes.
A challenging geopolitical environment
Many companies are currently facing huge challenges. “Like many other companies, Wilo is operating and developing within a wider geopolitical context. The free worldwide economic order is the backbone of companies that operate on a global scale”, warned Oliver Hermes. “One of the most important duties of European politics – and especially of the European economy – at present is to establish and promote alliances that preserve and support the multilateral, global world order and its free economic structures.” For this reason, Wilo is intensifying its networking activities on all continents.
Picture: Oliver Hermes, Chairman of the Executive Board and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Wilo SE. (Image: Wilo SE)