SWITZERLAND – Swiss multinational plant equipment manufacturer, Bühler has announced plans to merge the Grains and Foods Segment with the Consumer Foods segment by the end of quarter three of 2023. 

The Consumer Foods segment was created in 2018, following the acquisition of the Haas Group, the Austrian wafer, biscuits and confectionery production systems maker, by Bühler in January 2018.

Johannes Wick, the CEO of Grains & Food, is set to take over the Consumer Foods segment from Germar Wacker, who has been its CEO from its creation and will be leaving the company by the end of quarter three of 2023. 

This integration is aimed at improving the customer interfaces and hence increase efficiency in the delivery of services, Buhler said in its 2022 full year financial report. 

The two segments have been performing well on their own, and the increased efficiency that will result from integrating the two is bound to improve their performance even more.

 The Grains and Foods segment which remains  Bühler’s largest business saw an order intake of CHF 1,663 million (USD 1803.19 million), and a turnover growth of 2.6% to CHF 1,696 million (USD 1838.97 million) in 2022, despite instability in the aftermath of the covid19 pandemic.

 The Consumer Foods business registered an order intake growth of 21.6% to CHF 710 million, and turnover growth of 13.6% to CHF 578 million. 

Bühler’s Customer Service business (including Single Machines) also grew by 3.4% and added substantially to the 2022 results with turnover amounting to CHF 955 million, representing a 32% share of Group turnover.

Overall, Bühler reported a turnover increase of  10.3% to CHF 3.0 billion and registered  a net profit growth  of 35.7% to CHF 154 million.

Bühler managed to record an 8.7% rise in order intake to CHF 3.3 billion and further maintained a robust  order backlog at CHF 2.1 billion.

“The impressive dedication of our employees worldwide helped us to be agile, resilient, and creative, even in the face of increasing volatility and uncertainties,” said Bühler CEO Stefan Scheiber.

Africa and Middle East posts double digit growth

Regionally, Middle East Africa & India experienced the most growth in turnover shares, growing by 24% growth to account for 16% of the total share of the turnover. 

The growth was attributed to  rising demand for grain storage solutions, inspired by food security stock projects designed to handle the disruptions of the global grain supply attributed to the uncertain geopolitical situation of the region

Asia posted a 6% growth and accounted for 32% of the total share of turnover. Europe, which accounts for 30% of Buhler’s total turnover, reported a modest growth of  3% while North America and South America  reported sales growths of 17 and 26% respectively.

The growth in these regions contributed to the total growth in order intake 8.7% to CHF 3.3 billion and turnover by 10.3% to CHF 3.0 billion. 

Buhler noted that while 2023 will likely continue to be challenging, it is starting the year with a solid financial position and high carryover of orders.

“Overall, we are convinced that Bühler is well prepared to take another positive step in developing the business successfully in 2023, even in a very dynamic market environment,” Scheiber said.

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