Pandemic writ large in Xerox Q2 results


Second-quarter sales at Xerox fell by nearly $800m as the Covid-19 pandemic hit business, with CEO John Visentin praising the group’s employees for their efforts during a period of “unprecedented disruption”.

Visentin: proud of how employees have coped with virus crisis
Visentin: proud of how employees have coped with virus crisis

Sales in the three months to 30 June were down 35.3% at just under $1.5bn (£1.13bn ), while operating profits slumped by nearly 78% to $62m.

Gross margin held up, slipping from 39.1% to 38.5%.

Visentin said the most of the firm’s markets had either been fully or partially shut during the period.

“I am proud of our employees who did what was necessary during this unprecedented disruption to support our business and clients, especially those delivering essential services,” he stated.

He said that strong financial discipline across the business had “enabled us to deliver positive earnings per share and cash flow while continuing to invest in key areas of growth”, and the group had planned for a variety of future situations.

“No one can control or accurately predict what happens next. We have modelled numerous scenarios to ensure we have flexibility no matter how the pandemic continues to impact global business,” Visentin stated.

During the period Xerox launched its Adaptive CMYK+ kit for the Versant digital press.

This adds seven special colours to the standard CMYK, making the press capable of producing “a million colour hues and shades” by adding gold, silver, white, clear and fluorescent colours.

Xerox has focused its development efforts around five “innovation pillars”: 3D, sensors and the Internet of Things, clean tech, digital packaging, and Artificial Intelligence.

The group said that the Covid-19 situation had accelerated trends and needs in some of those key areas. “For example, Covid-19 has highlighted the risks globally dispersed supply chains pose for many businesses. Xerox’s liquid metal 3D printing solution can help strengthen supply chains with locally manufactured parts, and we remain on track to deliver our first product by year end,” Xerox stated.

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