EFI reports record sales but misses $1bn target

By Richard Stuart-Turner, Tuesday 31 January 2017

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EFI has reported record full-year sales of $992.1m (£798m) following a record fourth quarter but fell just short of its $1bn annual turnover target.

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Gecht: "It is very encouraging to see that our team’s work is showing great results"

For the quarter ended 31 December 2016 the company recorded sales of $266.7m, up 4% on Q4 2015 revenue of $256.5m. Its sales were up 12% year-on-year for the full-year ended 31 December 2016 – in 2015 it recorded total revenue of $882.5m.

Q3 gross profit was $126.7m, down by 0.47% compared to $127.3m in Q3 2015, but gross profit for the full-year was $483.4m, up 14.3% from the $423.1m recorded in 2015.

EFI chief executive Guy Gecht said: “All year we have stressed our focus on improving execution, especially around financial metrics, so it is very encouraging to see that our team’s work is showing great results.

“Having said that we are obviously disappointed that we did not deliver better top-line numbers, even when accounting for all the effects of FX.”

The business reported Q4 Industrial Inkjet revenue of $153.7m, up 8.3% year-on-year, Productivity Software revenue of $43.2m, up 11.1% year-on-year, and Fiery revenue of $69.9m, down 7.8% year-on-year.

For the full-year, turnover for the Industrial Inkjet division grew by 25.7% to $562.6m, Productivity Software sales rose by 12.1% to £151.7m and Fiery revenue fell by 7.3% to $277.7m.

The Fiery drop was again attributed to one unspecified partner, whose orders were impacted after the partner unexpectedly implemented a strict balance sheet optimisation push, which continued through to the end of 2016.

Additionally, Fiery sales were weak in the exclusive Asia-Pacific channel, where soft demand both impacted revenue and caused this channel to push their own Asia-Pacific low-cost DFE alternatives.

“While the first quarter is always a seasonally weak period for EFI, we expect to see a return to growth in the second half of the year as we will see the launch of new products introduced at Drupa,” said Gecht.

Geographically, EFI recorded full-year sales of $500.4m – up 5.7% – in the Americas, $360.3m – up 23.8% – in EMEA countries, and $131.3m – up 11.5% – in the APAC area. EMEA market share grew from 33% to 36% while Americas market share dropped from 54% to 51% and APAC market share stayed flat.

EFI used its Connect user conference earlier this month to unveil three new machines: the Vutek 5r and 3r (5m and 3m wide) LED roll-to-roll printers and the 5.2m-wide Vutek FabriVU 520 soft signage printer.

Gecht said these devices as well as the Drupa-launched Nozomi C18000 single-pass LED inkjet corrugated board press will deliver a boost for the business in 2017.

Xátiva, Spain-based corrugated packaging producer Rafael Hinojosa is set to install the world’s first Nozomi C18000, in the March-April timeframe.

“We remain focused on our goal of shipping 10 [Nozomi] units this year and growing the number of pre-ordered units, which now stands at around 30,” said Gecht.

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