According to the Geberit Group, sales in the second quarter of 2020 resulted in a “significant” decrease in sales in individuals markets but this was offset in the second half of the year.
While net sales of the Geberit Group decreased by 3.1% to CHF 2986million in 2020 it included
negative currency effects of CHF 136 million.
In local currencies, this resulted in an increase of 1.3% was achieved after currency adjustments and the company reports it was able to gain market share.
Geberit Group cites the performance was “down to the strong market position, prudent crisis management and the conscious decision to not furlough employees in order to also maintain the levels of contact with customers during the lockdown periods.”
Net sales in the fourth quarter reached CHF 724 million, which is equivalent to an increase of 3.2% in
Swiss francs and a currency-adjusted increase of 6.8%.
This followed on from slight growth of 1.5% in the first quarter, a drop of 10.7% in the second quarter and growth of 8.5% in the third quarter in local currencies.
In the first half of the year, the construction industry in Europe was negatively impacted by the effects
of the COVID-19 pandemic from mid-March to May.
In the second half of the year, catch-up effects,the renewed build-up of inventories at wholesalers and government stimulus programmes – especially the temporary VAT reduction seen in Germany – led to strong sales growth.
Sales development in individual countries varied greatly depending on the extent and length of the lockdown seen in the construction industry in spring.
In Germany (+7.3%), Austria (+5.0%), Switzerland (+4.1%), EasternEurope (+3.2%) and the Nordic Countries (+2.9%), construction sites saw only limited restrictions and leasing growth in currency-adjusted net sales was achieved across the year as a whole.
In contrast, the markets most seriously affected by the building site closures – the United
Kingdom/Ireland (-15.7%), the Iberian Peninsula (-10.9%), Italy (-8.3%) and France (-6.9%) – still saw a significant drop in currency-adjusted net sales after twelve months.
The negative impacts of theCOVID-19 pandemic continued to be felt in regions outside Europe – in the Middle East/Africa(-14.1%) and Far East/Pacific (-7.2%). Net sales in America rose by 1.7%.
Net sales in local currencies increased by 2.3% in Bathroom Systems and by 2.1% in Installation and Flushing Systems, with a slight fall of 0.8% in Piping Systems due to weaker new construction and project business.
Geberit recently introduced the mid-market Select bathroom collection and expanded its premium Aspire collection.
Management expects an operating cashflow margin of around 31% in 2020, with financial statements and annual report for 2020 to be released on March 10, 2021.