Blum reports 6.5% revenue increase for 2015/2016 – yet another year of growth for the Austrian fittings manufacturer

Thanks to innovative products, an international market presence, consistent investments worldwide and highly flexible employees, the Blum Group has once again seen a revenue increase during the financial year 2015/2016, despite very different performances by the individual markets. The family enterprise reports an increase of 6.5% compared to the previous year.

With a revenue increase of 6.5% to €1,656.17m, fittings manufacturer Blum concludes its financial year 2015/2016 that ended on 30th June. Innovative products, its international market presence and consistent investments all mean that the company headquartered in Höchst, Austria, can celebrate a solid increase in revenue.
50% of the company turnover was generated within the EU –15% in the US.

Diverging developments on different markets
In Western Europe, all markets developed in a positive manner for Blum in the financial year 2015/2016. In Eastern Europe, the fittings manufacturer is also pleased with the way business has developed in the EU member states.

In Russia and in Turkey, on the other hand, revenue has decreased drastically due to economic sanctions and political instability. Business in North America continued to flourish, while the tense economic situation made itself felt very strongly in South America, particularly in Brazil. In the Asia-Pacific region, most markets continued to grow, and Blum also registered growth figures in the Middle East and in Africa.

Employees – the basis of success
“The high level of motivation of our worldwide team and the excellent co-operation of all departments and organisations within our group are an essential building block of our success,” says CEO Gerhard E Blum, summing up the fundamental importance that Blum attaches to its employees.

During the past financial year, Blum had on average 6849 employees worldwide, an increase of 334 compared to the previous year. On 1st September this year, 80 new apprentices will start their technical training at Blum Austria. This means that from September 2016, the Blum Group will employ 306 apprentices, 13 of whom are based in the US.

Investments during the financial year 2015/2016
During the past financial year, the Blum Group has invested a total of €173.64m. At the Austrian site, a three-storey manufacturing building and a fully automated high-bay warehouse at plant four in Bregenz, Austria will commence operation in September. An additional high-bay warehouse is currently under construction and is scheduled to be completed by spring 2017.

Construction work for a new, eighth plant in Dornbirn, Austria has already commenced. The plan is for a stamping centre with a high-bay and strip steel warehouse to be operational by summer 2018.

In March 2016, Blum started to build an office and warehouse complex in Greece, scheduled for completion by the end of this year.

A new central warehouse was opened in China, and projects to expand the high-bay warehouses in Australia and Poland are set to commence this autumn.
With its commitment to renowned environmental networks and the use of alternative forms of energy in manufacturing and building activities, Blum always strives to use resources carefully and responsibly, in all areas of the company.

New products and services
During the financial year of 2015/16, the company has retained its strategic focus on the development of new products and services. In line with the current design trend that focuses on kitchens and furniture pieces with handle-less fronts, Blum offers sophisticated solutions in all three product groups – lifts, hinges and pull-outs. This includes box systems and runner systems for wooden drawers, but also the lift and hinge systems.

The new motion technology Tip-On Blumotion combines mechanical opening with gentle, quiet closing and was a feature in many of the show kitchens presented at this year’s Milan Furniture Fair.

Blum’s product range is completed by different services such as the Online Product Configurator that allows users to find the right fittings in a speedy and uncomplicated manner, or the mobile app for manufacturers and fitters that facilitates dimension calculations and product adjustments. The service range for customers and partners with its focus on assembly, marketing and logistics is expanded continuously.

Outlook for the upcoming financial year 2016/2017
It is difficult to assess what the upcoming financial year has in store. The problems arising from the sanctions imposed on Russia and the effects of the unstable political situation in Turkey will continue to make themselves felt.

Blum hopes that the economic situation in North America and the Asia-Pacific reason will remain stable. In South America, particularly in Brazil, there are few indications of economic recovery.

However, Blum remains convinced that their family enterprise will be able to make a positive impact during the financial year 2016/2017, based on innovative products, international market presence and outstanding staff.

Key figures*

Worldwide turnover
€1,656.17m – up 6.5%

Sales by business region
EU 50%, USA 15%, other markets 35%

Employees worldwide
6929 employees, up 321

Employees in Vorarlberg, Austria
5299 employees, up 287

Apprentices (from Sept this year)
306, 13 of whom at Blum USA, 80 at Blum in Vorarlberg

€173.64m, €120.56m in Vorarlberg

*dates and facts as at 30/06/2016