BERU increases revenues by more than 16%
In the 2003/04 financial year (ending March 31, 2004), BERU Aktiengesellschaft (Ludwigsburg) increased its sales revenues by 16.4% from €304.5 million to €354.5 million.
Despite the ongoing weakness in 2003 of automobile markets in North America and Western Europe, which only now seem to be improving in spring 2004, BERU surpassed its goal of 15% growth in sales revenues in 2003/04. Solid growth by Diesel Cold-Start Technology, high growth rates in the newest division of Electronics and Sensor Technology, and the accelerated introduction of new products and technologies were the key factors behind an increase in sales revenues of more than 16%. With organic growth of 10.8%, the company succeeded in generating a large proportion of this growth through the expansion of existing businesses.
With a workforce of 2,694 persons at the end of the financial year, the Group employed over 500 people more than at March 31, 2003 (2,173). The increase in the workforce by more than 24% is mainly explained by the acquisition of Eyquem in August 2003. An additional factor was that the Group continued to expand its capacities in research and development. In the year under review, BERU generated nearly 20% of total revenues with newly developed products such as ISS (the diesel instant-start system), auxiliary heating systems, high-temperature sensors and electronic tyre-pressure monitoring systems.
BERU’s youngest division, Electronics and Sensor Technology, continued its growth path and contributed €86.4 million to the Group’s sales revenues, after €60.1 million in the previous year. Sales revenues from electronic and sensor-technology products for the automotive industry thus soared by 43,8%. The Tyre-Pressure Monitoring Systems unit grew by more than 50% from €20.5 million to €30.8 million due to new product launches by VW and Audi. At the same time, the number of vehicle owners who decided to have this safety and comfort system retrofitted also increased.
The BERU management is satisfied with the course of business. Chairman of the Executive Board Marco von Maltzan stated: „In a generally weak automobile market, we have achieved our goal of raising sales revenues by 15% combined with an EBIT margin of at least 15%. More new product launches, our strong product pipeline, and the growing trend towards diesel engines due to the high price of fuel worldwide make us confident that we will take the opportunity to increase our sales revenues and operating profit in the current 2004/05 financial year. Assuming moderate growth of the European and Asian vehicle markets, for 2004/05 we have set ourselves the goal of 10% organic growth in sales revenues and an increase in operating profit of at least the same percentage.“