Solid sales development
Consolidated net sales in 2017 increased by 3.5% to CHF 2,908.3 million. Total growth comprised organic growth in local currencies of 3.5%, a foreign currency effect of +1.2% and a divestment effect of -1.2%.
When calculating organic growth, the net sales figures were adjusted for the net sales of the Koralle Group (sold at the end of June 2016) and of Varicor (sold at the beginning of 2017). The corresponding effect amounted to CHF 32 million.
The currency gains contained in net sales amounted to CHF 34 million. In 2017, 62% of net sales were generated in euros, 10% in Swiss francs, 5% in US dollars, 4% in British pounds and 19% in other currencies.
Net sales development 2008–2017
The following changes in net sales in the markets and product areas relate to currency-adjusted, organic developments.
Mainly positive developments in the markets
Europe, the largest region, posted organic growth of 2.9% in local currencies. The Iberian Peninsula (+11.9%), Austria (+9.0%), Central/Eastern Europe (+6.7%) and Italy (+6.6%) made strong gains, with the Benelux Countries (+4.0%), France (+3.9%), Switzerland (+3.7%), the Nordic Countries (+1.2%) and Germany (+0.7%) also recording increases. In Germany, capacity constraints of installers in the construction industry inhibited growth. Net sales were down in the United Kingdom/Ireland (-5.6%) in a declining market environment. Middle East/Africa (+16.8%) and Far East/Pacific (+13.3%) posted double-digit growth. Net sales in America rose by +3.6%.
Net sales by markets/regions 2017
Sanitary Systems reported strongest growth
Net sales for the Sanitary Systems product area amounted to CHF 1,361.5 million, corresponding to growth of 6.6%.
Net sales for the Installation Systems product line, at 30.0% of Group net sales the most important product line, rose by 8.9%. This above-average growth was strongly supported by the concealed cisterns, the drywall elements, the actuator plates and the synergies that were realised from the Sanitec integration. A decline of 1.7% was posted by the Cisterns and Mechanisms product line, which accounts for 8.7% of total net sales. This downturn was mainly attributable to a negative base effect due to a reduction in the order backlog in shower toilet business during the previous year. However, sales of the Monolith WC module on the one hand and fill and flush valves – despite a deterioration in the performance of the OEM business – on the other performed well. Net sales for the Faucets and Flushing Systems product line, which accounts for 4.4% of total net sales, increased by 4.3% in 2017. Once more, this product line was affected by the stagnating market faced by the US subsidiary Chicago Faucets in business with schools and hospitals. Electronic urinal systems trended well, however. Net sales for the Waste Fittings and Traps product line rose by 12.4%. The share of total Group net sales came to 3.7%. This product line posted the strongest growth of all, primarily due to the performance of shower drains – particularly the CleanLine shower channel launched in 2015.
Net sales for the Piping Systems product area increased by 3.8% to CHF 865.5 million.
The Building Drainage Systems product line grew by 8.6%. The share of total net sales reached 11.3%. The Silent-PP sound-insulating drainage system and the PE drainage system played a key role in this pleasing performance. Net sales for the Supply Systems product line increased by 1.0%. This product line contributed 18.5% to total net sales. The product line was burdened by a slight downturn in net sales of carbon steel piping systems.
The Sanitary Ceramics product area posted a 2.3% fall in net sales to CHF 681.3 million.
Net sales for the Bathroom Ceramics product line decreased by 2.1%, mainly due to the closure of two ceramics plants in France on the one hand and a weaker market environment in the Nordic Countries – an important region for Geberit in this product area – on the other. The contribution of this product line, which is the second largest measured by Group net sales, came to 18.8%. Net sales for the Ceramics Complementary Products product line declined by 3.2%. The share of Group net sales reached 4.6%, with the remainder of the product range outweighing the positive trend seen in bathroom furniture and shower trays. Another negative factor was that the installation systems of the former Sanitec, which fall under this product line, are increasingly being substituted by Geberit systems.