Solely as a result of the weakness of the solar market, the Schüco Group achieved turnover of 1.50 billion euros in 2013.
The Metal division, the strongest in terms of turnover, grew slightly to 1.12 billion euros. Although markets in the Benelux countries, Iberia, Greece and Russia slowed, this was offset by sales growth in Asia, the Baltic region and Turkey.
The PVC-U business division is heavily affected by fluctuating demand structures. However, market share increased in Russia, Italy, Turkey and the Benelux countries, resulting in a turnover of 235 million euros.
The domestic and international markets in which the Schüco New Energies division is active have changed dramatically over recent years. For this reason, Schüco had already begun restructuring in 2012. This division nevertheless had to withstand a 65% drop in sales compared to the previous year. Whereas system technology for generating solar energy still delivered approx. 400 million euros in revenue in 2012, last year the figure was only 145 million euros. This development significantly affected the overall turnover of the Schüco Group.
The Schüco Group employed 4800 staff in 2013, including 3368 in Germany. Compared to 2012 (5000), Schüco staff levels have been reduced by 4%. This is solely due to the challenging market in the solar business.
Building envelopes that can be designed with geometric freedom are the future of construction.
Investments in 2013
Schüco invested 35 million euros overall in 2013. More than 11 million euros were poured into expanding the PVC-U site in Weißenfels, including a foiling hall measuring over 6300 m², a new office and social area with utilities, as well as transport systems and spatial logistics. The largest investment at the premises in Bielefeld was for the new showroom, which showcases the latest range of products for the Metal division. Building specialists, such as architects, developers and partner companies have the opportunity here to gain visual and hands-on experience of new and proven aluminium window, door and façade technology, for example, the first aluminium window system certified in accordance with passive house criteria.
The Schüco AWS 90 SI+ Green window system achieves thermal insulation to passive house standard with an insulating bar made from sustainable raw materials.
Outlook for 2014
Owing to the different economic conditions across Europe, Schüco expects varying market opportunities and success in 2014. In Germany, the mild winter has brought marked growth in newbuilds and renovation projects. Happily, this enabled the Group to achieve double-digit growth in turnover in the core business of windows, doors and façades in the first quarter of 2014.
Tapping into new international markets, as well as the market launch of new aluminium products unveiled at the 2013 BAU trade fair in Munich will have a positive impact on business in 2014. The Metal division is redefining design freedom and planning reliability with the Schüco Parametric Concept, its free-form system façade that can be designed parametrically. This has been particularly enthusiastically received by architects. There has also been a focus on efficient fabrication and assembly with "Schüco SimplySmart".
The largest investment project at the Bielefeld site in 2013 was the Schüco Showroom.
The PVC-U division, based since 2006 in Weißenfels near Leipzig, is affected by heavily fluctuating demand structures due to a stagnating market across Europe. In order to continue to be successful, the business division is combining its two production facilities for PVC-U profiles into one site. Production capacity at Haan is therefore being relocated to Weißenfels at the end of 2014. All processes for this business division - development, purchase of raw materials, production, sales and all logistics for domestic and overseas business – will then be controlled centrally from one location. This new structure will enable the PVC-U business division to continue to grow. The first signs of this could be seen in March with a successful appearance at the 2014 fensterbau/frontale exhibition in Nuremberg.
For more than 10 years, the New Energies division has been developing and selling energy-generating system technology for small and medium-sized firms, as well as for family homes and apartment buildings. However, it has become evident that synergies with the core business of Schüco are insufficient to be successful alone in the long term in a market which has become more challenging. Subject to approval from the German anti-trust authorities, the business division will therefore be taken over by Viessmann Photovoltaik GmbH in Allendorf from 1 June 2014.
In future, Schüco will focus its entire power of innovation on its core business: the development and sale of pioneering system technology for energy-efficient buildings. This will continue to include building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV), which forms part of the Metal division.
Schüco – System solutions for windows, doors and façades
Together with its worldwide network of partners, architects, specifiers and investors, Schüco creates sustainable building envelopes which focus on people and their needs in harmony with nature and technology. The highest demands for design, comfort and security can be met, whilst simultaneously reducing CO2 emissions through energy efficiency, thereby conserving natural resources. The company and its Metal and PVC-U divisions deliver tailored products for newbuilds and renovations, designed to meet individual user needs in all climate zones. With 4800 employees and 12,000 partner companies, Schüco is active in 78 countries and achieved turnover of 1.5 billion euros in 2013. For more information, visit www.schueco.com