Sales totalling 1.354 billion euro and greater than expected performance in all the main business areas. Continuing growth on international markets thanks to carefully targeted action in several countries. Highly positive feedback from recent strategic takeovers.
With sales of 1.354 billion euro and a net result higher than that of the previous year by some 3 million euro, Sacmi has, for the second year running, posted one of the best results in its long history. This, then, is what emerges from the Annual Report 2015, approved on 14th May by the cooperative members’ meeting. “Like its parent company Sacmi Imola, the Sacmi Group closes the year with a result that decidedly improves on both the budget forecast and the previous year’s performance”, points out the President of Sacmi, Paolo Mongardi.
The year 2015 was also characterised by the positive effects of the special transactions completed in previous years, These included, for example, the sell-off of Negri Bossi and the acquisition of shares in Cosmec, Cmc, Eurofilter, Mectiles and B&B, plus the recent 100% takeover of C&M Holding. These operations have already yielded better than expected results and are likely to generate further positive effects for several years.
At individual business-market level, performance has been driven by the strategies of both Ceramics and Packaging-Beverage. More specifically, the Group’s German firms achieved particularly good results: Riedhammer’s performance is noteworthy as it has, alongside its more traditional business areas, increased its market share in the special ceramic kiln sector (doing so in synergy with Sacmi Imola’s Special Pressings Division) while Sama put the seal on its 20th year of doing business by inaugurating a new facility (tableware lab) and renewing corporate organisation.
On the Ceramics front, 2015 also saw Sacmi complete a 100% takeover of Intesa (glazing lines and digital printing machines) and the year proved to be a positive one for Sacmi Forni thanks, in particular, to innovative large slab firing solutions (EKO kilns). These results go hand in hand with the growing success of the Continua+ line and, reveals General Manager Pietro Cassani, “lead in the direction of further investment in ever-newer market solutions that, on one hand, focus on product quality and manufacturing versatility and, on the other, lower consumption and emissions; such solutions are designed to combine efficiency and flexibility as part of a broader goal of helping customers create the ‘smart factory’.
Environmentally sustainable development, the creation of shared value for employees, cooperative members, customers and stakeholders. This, then, is the Sacmi business model, comments President Paolo Mongardi, a model founded on the positive values of the Italian cooperative movement, the ultimate goal of which – as stated in our 2015 Sustainability Report – is the creation of wellbeing for the community, in keeping with the growing international sensitivity to environmental issues that Sacmi has already responded to with the H.E.R.O (High Efficiency Resource Optimizer) project which provides a series of energy-efficient technological innovations across the entire machine range.
On the international scene, nearly 90% of sales continue to be absorbed outside Italy, a figure in keeping with previous years. Sacmi has reaped the rewards of policies aimed at boosting synergy between Group companies on all the main markets and has been particularly attentive to investment in more promising nations (from Africa to the Far East, from the USA to South America). Manufacturing and sales policies were also aimed at ensuring the world’s individual areas make a balanced contribution to overall Group sales.
A key strategic decision in 2015 was that of establishing a new branch of Sacmi USA in Tennessee; recently inaugurated, this facility will provide after-sales support for key projects being implemented in the area by numerous Italian firms.
Similarly, the just-ended year demonstrated the soundness of the Beverage development plan, with unified management of the entire Packaging portfolio and reorganisation of design and after-sales services. Equally positive – upon final balance– were the results of the Group’s Latin American companies (Sacmi de Mexico and Sacmi do Brasil), while in Asia the growing dynamism of the Indian market – with excellent results from Sacmi Engineering India – have been counter-balanced by a slowdown of the Chinese market which Sacmi is responding to with ever-greater attentiveness to efficiency and costs. In any event, the Group’s presence in the Far East remains strategic as markets like Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand become more and more important for all the sectors in which the Group operates.
Another defining feature of 2015 was the continuing development of the African market in the North (Egypt, Algeria and Morocco), in South Africa and especially in Central Africa, with direct investment also on the rise in non-traditional outlet markets. “A result achieved”, states the General Manager, “thanks to a far-sighted policy that has, in recent years, seen Sacmi set up new facilities and branches on the continent and develop a far-reaching assistance network to provide customers and markets with close local support”.
“Similarly to the parent company”, underlines Pietro Cassani, “the cooperative also had an excellent customer portfolio at the start of 2016 and further improvements in revenues and margins are anticipated; growth forecasts are particularly encouraging for the Closures and Beverage (Packaging) and Food Divisions. Of course, international macroeconomic and geopolitical uncertainties will inevitably have an impact on Group results in certain areas. Yet we remain confident that – thanks to the daily commitment of a qualified managerial team and by focusing, as is the Sacmi tradition, on innovation and quality – all our goals can be achieved successfully”. The year 2016 will also see Sacmi head decisively in the direction of Industry 4.0, the ‘factory of the future’ where the real ‘physical’ world of machines and ‘virtual’ digitalization merge. Industry 4.0 is the internet of things and services, where complete process integration and control are combined with just-in-time production, where advanced plant sensors, automated order management systems and fast prototyping services make up a single fully integrated process, the hub of which is data and, therefore, the new professions capable of managing and controlling it. Alongside the process revolution, then, Sacmi also aims to found, at the Imola-based parent company, an ‘Academy 4.0’ dedicated to training our own, customers’ and partners’ human resources”.
Buoyed by these positive economic results, adds Sacmi’s President, Paolo Mongardi “the cooperative shall continue investing in research to provide markets, over the coming years, with innovative solutions that offer ever-better, customer-focused product and service quality. We shall also continue our commitment to cooperative values and solidarity, both nationally and internationally. Again in 2015, considerable resources were ploughed back into improving quality of life within the local community by investing in health, culture and various youth training schemes; to this we can also add the over 14,000 training hours for partners, 359 man-days of design and testing on customers’ premises and a daily commitment to health and safety in the workplace that – thanks also to new technology – places enormous emphasis on people and skills. Ever since its founding, the Sacmi Group has nurtured these core values, making them the foundation of success in this new millennium”.