Manroland Sheetfed has seen improved results for the fourth consecutive year after owner Langley Holdings transformed it from a “lumbering leviathan” into an “efficient business”.
In the calendar year 2015, it recorded sales of €291.9m (£225.3m) up from €288.2m in 2014. Orders on hand were worth €79.5m, against €48.3m in 2014.
The division contributed around 10% towards the group result, helping to generate a group pre-tax profit of €106.7m. Chairman Tony Langley expressed satisfaction with its performance, and revealed Langley had got its money back from its acquisition of Manroland in 2012 and had a "healthy order backlog" for its presses going into 2016.
In his chairman's address he said: “The market for new presses saw something of an improvement in 2015 with a flush of orders, following the euro devaluation early last year, but that petered later in the year.
“New press margins remained thin, although the aftermarket continued to be robust. New press sales dropped dramatically right across the industry in the aftermath of the financial crisis, which means that the stock of presses in the field has become older and as this equipment continues to age, demand for replacement parts and service has tended to increase.”
Langley said press prices continued to remain depressed due to over-supply but said that Manroland was “correctly structured”.
“Before we acquired Manroland four years ago, the business was a lumbering leviathan. Today, it is an efficient business with its break-even point a fraction of former levels.”
Langley has stripped out costs by consolidating production to one location, selling what it saw as surplus buildings and machinery and cutting staff.
Manroland Sheetfed’s Offenbach am Main site was subject to short-time working in 2015 because of a drop-off in orders from China.
Langley also turned stock, debtors and other assets, which were acquired at a substantial discount, to cash. He said cash collection has significantly improved.
He said in contrast, Manroland’s competitors “continue to languish and their re-alignment of capacity to current demand remains glacially slow”.
The press manufacturer is the largest division in the group that makes up Langley Holdings, representing a third of its revenue and staffing. The Germany-based company employs 1,609 people.
Langley said Manroland's revamped Roland 700 Evolution B1 press, launched in November 2014, had been well-recieved by the market.
As a whole Langley Holdings reported revenues of €874.5m and a pre-tax profit of €106.7m. The group had no debt and almost €330m of cash reserves at year end. Langley called 2015 "a significant milestone".
Langley Holdings is a privately-owned engineering and industrial group based in the UK and operating in several industry sectors. Its principal operating divisions are in Germany and France and it has than 80 subsidiaries worldwide. It was founded in 1975 by Tony Langley and currently employs around 4,300 people worldwide.