Oberderdingen (Baden-Württemberg/Germany). Blanco GmbH + Co KG, one of the world’s leading suppliers of kitchen sinks, remains on course for success and has announced yet another significant increase in turnover for the fiscal year 2011. As the company announced at its annual press conference, its consolidated net turnover increased to € 252 million, an increase of € 10 million on the previous year.
The sink specialist has been particularly successful on its home market of Germany. Additional market shares and the positive market development combined to help increase revenue by more than 8 percent to its new record of € 96 million. Blanco also asserted itself on foreign markets where, despite the persistently difficult conditions, it managed to achieve slight growth.
At the start of the fiscal year 2012, Blanco is extremely happy with its 1200 employees. However, the international markets are still characterised by insecurity and increased competition, which is why Blanco continues to strive for consistent process optimisation and greater efficiency in order to boost its global competitiveness.
Germany is the brand’s biggest market, and proved to be the growth motor. The easy-care sinks in Silgranit in particular shone with double-digit increases. The kitchen technology specialist continues to benefit from the trend for coloured sinks, and has intensified its marketing activities in this sub-division. With significant increases, kitchen mixer taps and the exclusive products of the sub-brand Blanco SteelArt made an above-average contribution towards its turnover.
The foreign markets as a whole proved to be difficult and unsteady. Development in the Central European adjacent states was fundamentally stable. Italy, Spain and Portugal in particular recorded double-digit growth in Southern Europe. With the exception of Sweden, Northern Europe remained at the previous year’s level. Many Eastern European states are suffering from the funding shortfalls that, despite potentially higher requirements, resulted in poor demand. In Russia, however, Blanco also achieved strong growth, partly through the acquisition of the national distribution. The Northern American market stagnated; the Canadian market is in decline. The Asian market, especially China, developed dynamically, which was also due to new constructions.
“Blanco was able to achieve above-average growth in most countries, and in doing so improve its market share. However, the situation remained difficult in North America,” CEO Achim Schreiber summed up the situation.
Blanco produces sinks in the three materials stainless steel, granite and ceramic that are of relevance to the market, and so is in an excellent position for satisfying individual consumer wishes. The company has enjoyed particular success in the marketing of its Silgranit sinks. Last year, production at the two Silgranit works increased once again to over 600,000 sinks. And with that, Blanco underscores its global market leadership in the field of granite sinks.
The product area of kitchen mixer taps also recorded double-digit growth. Germany’s long-time market leader was able to remain on course for success with the further extension of its product portfolio and the consistent implementation of the high product requirements for maximum hygiene and safety. Only top quality materials are used. Particular attention is paid to water-conducting parts. Voluntary certification by the DVGW (certification centre of the German Association of Gas and Water Supplies), which goes beyond the comprehensive internal quality assurance measures, underpins the company’s high awareness of its responsibility towards the consumer.
And once again last year, the company won several design awards. Blanco sinks and mixertaps received a number of renowned awards in Germany and in the USA. They included two KB Culture Awards and the IF product design award. However, one particular highlight was without doubt the receipt of no fewer than 4 red dots in the spring of 2012. “These awards are confirmation of Blanco’s design philosophy and, at the same time, recognition of our design competence, which has been achieved over years and decades,” Achim Schreiber emphasises.
There was a significant increase in the investment volume in 2011 on the previous year, which totalled € 11.7 million. The main focuses were the development of the production capacities for Silgranit sinks, reorganisation and process optimisations at the stainless steel production lines in Sulzfeld, and the development of innovative products in all areas. The company has installed its own photovoltaic system on the roof of its logistics centre in Bruchsal, thereby making an important contribution to protecting the environment.
The principle of sustainability is of particular importance to Blanco. The three fields of action, economy, ecology and social environment, are all of equal status. The company’s third sustainability report, which has just been published, contains details of the important activities of the past two years as well as an outlook on planned measures.
Corporate culture has always been of particular importance to Blanco. New guidelines for working together and management have been issued in order to anchor even more strongly the working methods that are characterised by tremendous levels of freedom and a high level of individual responsibility. The sink specialist employs 1200 people all over the world as the annual average; the number at its German locations has increased slightly to 920.
To Achim Schreiber, the good results of the fiscal years 2011 are clearly down to its workforce. "I am delighted with this fantastic team achievement and with the unique Blanco spirit,” he said. “And we must thank everyone for this tremendous level of commitment and their excellent motivation.”
The start of the new fiscal year 2012 encouraged the company to feel cautiously optimistic as it looks towards the future, as the extraordinary growth on the German market in particular creates a happy mood. This dynamic development will not only help to preserve current jobs, but will also lead to new ones, especially in Germany.
BLANCO GmbH + Co KG has its headquarters in Oberderdingen (Baden-Württemberg, Germany) and is one of the world’s leading suppliers of kitchen technology, offering a comprehensive range of high-quality products such as functional sinks and kitchen taps, waste separation systems and accessories.It has subsidiaries all over the world, including the USA, Canada, Western and Eastern Europe. Blanco has approx 1,200 employees in total. The company has manufacturing plants in Sinsheim, Sulzfeld, Istanbul and Toronto. The company was founded in 1925 by Heinrich Blanc and is now part of the E.G.O. Blanc and Fischer Group, which has a controlling interest. In 2007, the “Catering + Med Systems” division was transferred into an independent company, the new BLANCO CS GmbH + Co KG. Both BLANCO companies belong to the Caux Round Table (CRT) and are committed to observing ethical business principles.