During today’s digital press event packaging machine manufacturer Gerhard Schubert GmbH released a positive business result for 2020. The numbers are significantly better than the expected figures after the adjusted forecast given at the at the beginning of the pandemic year. The Group turnover grew by 2.5 percent the fiscal year 2020 to a total of 281 million euros in sales. Also the current situation is positive, driven by growth in the USA and Europe, Schubert realised a 25 per cent increase in incoming orders compared to the previous year.
In the unforeseen pandemic situation and at an early stage, the Crailsheim-based world market leader in packaging technology relied on a company-internal task force along with a comprehensive safety and hygiene concept. “It was a very good decision and is still working very well for us today. Thanks to the measures implemented to minimise the impact of COVID-19 on our operations, we have a very low number of employees who fell ill overall. We have been and continue to be able to work and deliver to our customers at all times,” explains Peter Gabriel, Commercial Managing Director of Gerhard Schubert GmbH.
Digital services prove their worth
The manufacturer is benefiting from the fact that it is well advanced in the field of digitalisation. “Our capabilities for virtual machine approvals, AR-supported service processes and digitally supported commissioning at customer sites have naturally proven very successful in customer support in 2020 and will continue to be an important focus of our development in the coming years,” reports Marcel Kiessling, Managing Director Sales and Service. In this context, the increases in service revenues compared to the previous year are clear: In spite of all the restrictions on travel and availability of service staff, Schubert achieved an increase in turnover in this key area from 54 (2019) to 59 million euros. This is just one reason why the further development of service offerings is an integral part of the company’s growth strategy: “A key focus is to increase and optimise performance tracking. Added to this is the customisation of our services – flexible and ideally adapted to specific customer requirements,” continues Kiessling.
The future is both sustainable and flexible
Ground-breaking innovations and investments enable Schubert to continue winning over customers, while strengthening the company’s leadership position in the industry during the 2020 pandemic year. Ralf Schubert, Managing Partner explains: “We have been intensifying our research activities in the field of robotics technology for some time. With AI projects in the field of robotics and image processing, we are making a decisive contribution to the ongoing professionalisation and future viability of the entire packaging industry. Added to this is the development of innovative assemblies for our TLM machines as well as our first collaborative robot and progress on TITAN, our packaging systems’ digital twin.” To this end, the Crailsheim-based company has been investing around 8 to 10 per cent of its annual turnover for decades in a time-tested tradition.
Outlook for 2021
Supported by the high order backlog and equally positive order intake in the first quarter, Schubert is very confident about the development of the current financial year: “Our production capacities are currently very well utilised. We already have 100 per cent of the planned annual turnover in our order books for 2021 and are already planning our new orders into 2022,” says Peter Gabriel, describing the favourable situation. The signs are pointing towards continued growth for the manufacturer in other respects too; In the second half of 2021, construction of the new assembly hall will begin as part of the planned further expansion of the Crailsheim site. Prior to this, in 2019 the adjacent country road was rerouted in order to make way for the extensive construction work, creating the necessary space and ideal conditions for up to 300 additional employees.