08. décembre 2014

Strong revenue growth drives the HARTING Technology Group forward

Philip F. W. Harting, Torsten Ratzmann, Dr. Michael Pütz, Dr. Frank Brode, Maresa Harting-Hertz and Margrit Harting. (from left to right)

The HARTING Technology Group in Espelkamp has started the 2014/15 financial year with a strong tailwind. Revenues rose during the past 2013/14 financial year (October 1, 2013 to September 30, 2014) by 13 % to € 547 million (previous year: € 484 million).

“The strong growth is spurring us on and acting as a motivational factor for the entire Group. We are absolutely delighted. This is a result that we predicted at the last annual press conference. We have therefore delivered,” remarked Philip F. W. Harting, Senior Vice President Connectivity & Networks as well and President/General Partner. At the beginning of December 2013, the HARTING Senior Vice President forecasted revenues of over € 500 million for the 2013/14 financial year.

Business performance was very strong in the individual regions in which the HARTING Technology Group operates. Only the EMEA region (excluding Germany) reflected marginal revenue growth. In contrast, revenues in Asia increased by 40 % to € 126 million (previous year: € 90 million).

Europe - excluding Germany and the Middle East (EMEA) - showed a slight 0.4 % rise in revenues to € 175 million (previous year: € 174 million). HARTING's revenues in Germany climbed by 11 % to € 194 million (previous year: € 174 million). In the Americas, the Espelkamp-based, family-owned company posted a 13 % increase to € 52 million (previous year: € 46 million). The HARTING Technology Group generated over two-thirds of total revenues (64 %) abroad. “We aim to achieve customer proximity worldwide. That applies to all of our markets. We are focusing in particular on the Asian growth markets and above all on China,” said Philip F. W. Harting.

Many emerging countries have to expand their infrastructure to keep pace with population growth. Connectors are needed for every new house as well as for every new factory, every school, local authority, every hospital and every elevator. “Connectors offer various advantages over fixed connections. Any interconnection can be set up via a fixed cable but it is easier, more flexible and more cost-effective over the long-term to use connectors. Consequently, each and every network is a gift for HARTING,” underlined Philip F. W. Harting.

In view of these growth opportunities, HARTING has set up new production facilities in China, Brazil and Romania. “These countries offer enormous future potential. We intend to expand HARTING's global production network step-by-step,” added Torsten Ratzmann, Senior Vice President Logistics and Production.

Innovative solutions and products

With new products and solutions, HARTING successfully consolidated its market position as a research-led and innovative technology group with systematic customer orientation in the financial year under review. HARTING presented product innovations that provide customers with rapid access to the world of Industry 4.0 at the Hannover Messe and SPS IPC Drives trade fair in Nuremberg. HARTING unveiled customized solutions for the smart factory at both events.

The HARTING Technology Group is driving technological advancement forward in the field of integrated industry in close collaboration with science. HARTING is developing solutions aimed at increasing the flexibility of production processes as part of the “FlexiMon” research project, as Philip F. W. Harting emphasized. The project is part of the “it’s OWL” leading-edge cluster being implemented in the “leading-edge cluster competition” organized by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research within the framework of the 2020 Hightech Strategy for Germany. The “FlexiMon” system was exhibited at both trade fairs and attracted a great deal of interest from the industry audience.

Positive developments in the business areas

All HARTING companies achieved very positive business development over the past financial year. Philip F. W. Harting was generally optimistic about future prospects. The HARTING Technology Group nevertheless enters the new 2014/15 financial year with caution. The reasons he cited were a slowdown in global growth, China’s flagging growth trend and geopolitical risks. In this regard, he pointed to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and the ISIS terror threat emanating from the Near and Middle East.

“We therefore only anticipate slight, single-digit growth for the new financial year. We nevertheless have a clear growth strategy in ‘Route 2020’, we possess the right solutions and products and we have the right team in place worldwide at all HARTING sites,” declared Philip F. W. Harting.

Opportunities and change as a result of Integrated Industry

Looking to the future, Philip F. W. Harting pointed out that the opportunities and changes for the HARTING Technology Group as a result of the interconnected world of Integrated Industry are of fundamental strategic importance to the future of the Group. “Thanks to our expertise and innovative products, we believe we are in the position to drive technological advancement forward together with our customers,” remarked Philip F. W. Harting. “However, this digital transformation does not just concern our products, as the company itself must also change and modernize.”

The technological transformation makes major demands, for example, of future generations of technical specialists and their capability to collaborate as part of international networks.

Clear commitment to the Mühlenkreis region

HARTING is committed to the locations of Espelkamp, Rahden and Minden in the Mühlenkreis region. “We are investing here because we feel a sense of commitment to the region. This will secure the existing jobs,” underlined Maresa Harting-Hertz, Senior Vice President Finance and Purchasing as well as President/General Partner. Total investments amounted to around € 44 million over the past financial year (previous year: € 40 million). Investment in the financial year under review focused on the HARTING Quality and Technology Center (HQT), which was inaugurated in June 2014. “We are developing the cutting-edge technology of the future at the HQT. The HQT is a byword for modern and cost-efficient quality management. We have also received accreditation as a test laboratory,” revealed Dr. Frank Brode, Senior Vice President New Technologies.

The group company also plans to ramp up capacities at HARTING Systems at plant 5, situated in Espelkamp-Isenstedt. “HARTING Systems is on a clear growth path. There is very strong demand for our state-of-the-art cash register systems from leading players in the retail sector. The ground-breaking ceremony for a new production hall in October was certainly the right decision. We are very confident that this positive trend will continue,” noted Mrs. Harting-Hertz.

Good progress is also being made with the plans for the new logistics center. Construction work is set to commence in the spring of 2015 and the building should be occupied in the course of 2017. “The building will increase storage capacity and the throughput of products. Our innovative, high-quality products will be delivered to customers even faster,” emphasized Philip F. W. Harting.

A total of 233 new jobs created worldwide

There were also positive developments in terms of headcount in the year under review. The workfore (including trainees) stood at 4,048 members of staff worldwide at the end of the financial year (previous year: 3,815). This means that the Technology Group has created 233 new jobs within 12 months. Of these 233 jobs, 149 positions (plus 7.1%) were created in Germany and 84 (plus 4.9%) abroad. At the three locations in the Minden-Lübbecke district (Espelkamp, Rahden and Minden), HARTING employed a total of 2,251 staff (including trainees) as of September 30, 2014 (previous year: 2,102).

HARTING focuses on youth – more training places

HARTING is continuing to systematically focus on young people and takes on more trainees than the company requires. The training of technical specialists and management executives has been an integral part of corporate culture for years. The number of training places was up by 11% on the balance sheet date after rising by 12% and 15% respectively in the two previous years. As of September 30, a total of 127 (previous year: 114) apprentices were receiving training in 20 professions at the NAZHA training center. In the 2015 calendar year, the HARTING Technology Group plans to further increase the number of training places by 24 taking the total to 151.

“The HARTING employer brand remains very highly regarded in the region. However, in light of demographic change, we must also invest in our talented youngsters at an early stage. They are the technical specialists and management executives of the future,” pointed out Dr. Michael Pütz, Senior Vice President Human Resources, Facilities and Legal Affairs.

HARTING holds numerous information events for general education schools over the year, presenting itself as an innovative technology group. The family-owned company enjoys an excellent reputation among school pupils in the Mühlenkreis region looking for an apprenticeship, added Pütz. “The outstanding exam results of our trainees show that we are teaching the right subject matter in an effective and application-oriented way,” underlined Pütz. The performance of the HR department has also received acclaim. HARTING won the “HR Excellence Award” in the trainee marketing category in Berlin on Wednesday evening.

Michael Pütz pointed to the “KiTec” project as a further example of a target-oriented instrument. “KiTec” aims to stimulate interest in technology among children at an early stage. Since September 2011, HARTING has been the only company in the eastern Westphalia-Lippe region to support the “KiTec – Children Discover Technology” project launched by the “Wissensfabrik – Unternehmen für Deutschland e.V.”.

At HARTING, the emphasis is placed on the employees and their work, as Pütz explained. “We would not have achieved this outstanding result without our workforce worldwide. Our employer branding PEOPLE POWER PARTNERSHIP is put into practice at HARTING,” he added. This is why establishing positive framework conditions for our employees is so important. In this context, he highlighted the “Fit@HARTING” health program.
“We are a family-friendly company. We believe it is vitally important that our employees can reconcile their careers with family life. Only if this is achieved can they perform well on a daily basis, which is critical to the success of the company,” observed Pütz.

He drew attention to the expansion work being carried out at NAZHA, which is set for completion in summer 2015, as a highlight of the coming year. “This will provide our trainees with even better opportunities to learn on site,” remarked the Senior Vice President Human Resources.

You find this information also under: www.harting.com/en/news/pressfolder/annualfinancialstatements/