Agfa-Gevaert has posted improved results for 2015. Growth in the graphics division was boosted by a double-digit hike in inkjet sales as well as the effects of a weaker euro.
For the full year to December 2015, revenues in Agfa’s graphics section remained stable with a modest 0.2% growth to €1.4bn (£1bn), reversing the decline of 2014.
The company said that “despite softness in the emerging markets and political instability in certain regions” sales had been helped by a significant increase in ink volumes and the launch last year of the Jeti Mira and Jeti Tauro wide-format printers, and the Acorta cutting table. “Positive currency effects” also had some impact, Agfa said.
A tough competitive climate continued to exert pressure on Agfa’s CTP business although it showed some improvement towards the end of the year. The company said efficiency measures had counterbalanced the effects of stiff competition as well as those of raw material costs. EBITDA fell 5.7% to €94.7m while gross profit margin remained stable at 28.3% of sales.
Agfa’s UK managing director Joergen Vad said the UK had performed extremely well: “We were the best performing country in Europe last year. It was a very good year for us in terms of top line and margin, which was of course helped by the strong pound and changes we’ve made in the organisation.
He added: “We had our best year for a long time in pre-press and inkjet thanks again to some organisational changes – we employed some fantastic new young people – and of course the Jeti Mira, which is doing really well. Also our family of workflow software, which can sometimes be overlooked, was a great performer last year.”
Vad said the UK’s positive GDP growth suggested a continued strong performance for Agfa's UK operations this year, although uncertainty surrounding a potential Brexit was a worrying time for business.
Across the Agfa-Gevaert Group sales in its Healthcare division increased 2.8% to €1.1bn with EBITDA up 17% to €134m.
The Speciality Products unit, which develops products such as printed circuit boards and synthetic paper, experienced a drop in revenues of 4.1% to €189m and big jump in EDITDA of 53% to €16.7m.
Overall group sales were relatively unchanged across the year with a 1% increase to €2.6bn while EBITDA was up 8.1% to €240m.
President and chief executive Christian Reinaudo said after achieving a positive net result for a third consecutive year, he was positive about the outlook and expected to achieve its €3bn sales target in the medium-term.
“All our business groups have technology leading products and solutions. We also have the right people and know-how to be successful in our markets. Therefore, I am confident that we will succeed in growing our company in a profitable way," he said.