Komori and KBA press sales hit by impact of virus

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Press manufacturers Komori and KBA have both taken a hit from the effects of the virus, with both recording losses in the March quarter.

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Covid hit: Komori

The duo are two of the big five offset manufacturers with Heidelberg, manroland, and RMGT (formerly Ryobi) making up the quintet.

Komori said demand in western markets was already “sluggish” in the second half of the year before the virus, with China “weak” resulting in operating losses for the year likely to double from the initial ¥1.7bn ($25m) to ¥3.3bn ($50m).

At KBA in the March quarter, revenues were down by a quarter to €172m, with the sheetfed division seeing the biggest fall, sales were down by 40 per cent to €68.2m.

Komori said it was taking a whopping ¥17.7bn ($250m) impairment hit in anticipation of further losses due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Some 40 per cent of Komori presses are sold in Japan, which is currently in a state of emergency.

It has amened its net sales forecast for the year ending 31 March, reducing them by 4.8 per cent from ¥81.5bn to ¥77.6bn.

Forecasted results for the year ending 31 March have been revised as follows: Net sales forecast reduced by 4.8 per cent from ¥81.5bn ($1.18bn) to ¥77.6bn ($1.12bn).

KBA has said that its first quarter order intake is “solid” although its actual sales were down by 25.3 per cent. The group’s net loss increased from €4.9m to €36.6m.

Like Komori, KBA said the virus restrictions in China – the world's biggest offset press market – had a major impact on its results.

With its greater orientation to the packaging market, KBA is less affected by the commercial print issues. Its overall order intake slipped by just 1.8 per cent to €271.5m, with its digital and web division seeing orders rose buy more than a third at 36.7 per cent. All other divisions declined.

New CFO DR, Stephen Kimmich, said, “Because of the drastic effects that are already apparent, our planning for 2020 is no longer achievable. Accordingly, corona crisis management currently has the highest priority so that we can master the challenges that lie ahead and be prepared for the period after the Covid-19 pandemic. In addition to the Performance 2024 efficiency programme, the strategic focus on packaging printing and digital services is to be stepped up again afterwards.”

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