The business development of the KERN-LIEBERS group of companies during fiscal year 2015/16 in June was characterized by satisfactory growth overall. Group turnover for fiscal year 2015/16 was 661 million Euros, which represents a growth rate of 5.3% compared to previous year (628 million Euros).
Turnover growth varied from region to region: while it increased partly due to favorable exchange rates strongly again in North America (+12%), increases could be also achieved in Germany (+ 4%) and in other European countries (+11%). Asia was the only region in which turnover remained at the previous year's level (+1%). After a very weak first quarter in China, declines in turnover were offset by strong growth rates in the following quarters.
For the new fiscal year 2016/17, the Group plans a continuation of the growth trend. Numerous new product ramp ups and projects in all regions and all business units are supporting this development. However, given that the global economic outlook shows some weakening signs, it is difficult to assess whether negative factors will become stronger in the coming months. Concerns about the robustness of the global economy are fueled primarily by the relative weakness of the China economy, low oil prices, the dispute between the EU partners in the refugee crisis and the deterioration of financial conditions in the emerging countries. "We are therefore looking into the new fiscal year with cautious optimism," says the Chairman of the Management Board Dr. Udo Schnell.
To support the growth path, the company is planning further investments in new production facilities at its locations in the Czech Republic and Mexico, which will be completed in the course of this fiscal year. A new location in Tianjin near Beijing, China, is in planning.
The number of people employed by the group rose in the past fiscal year by 181 to 6,916 employees. At the company`s main location in Schramberg-Sulgen, a total of 56 new employees were recruited to manage growth in turnover and new projects.
At KERN-LIEBERS, apprenticeship training traditionally has been considered as highly important: in fiscal year 2015/16, 19 apprenticeship trainees and 6 students at the Schramberg location alone passed their final examinations. In September 2016, 41 young people – 11 more than in the previous year – will begin their apprenticeship training or studies at KERN-LIEBERS in Schramberg, giving a total of 120 young people in training at KERN-LIEBERS in Schramberg.
The new Oberreute daycare center in Schramberg-Sulgen, opened in September 2014 as a joint project between KERN-LIEBERS and the city of Schramberg, is a modern all-day care facility with a total of 40 places and is enjoying increasing popularity. All places in both the kindergarten and nursery are occupied. Supporting this facility, KERN-LIEBERS is making a valuable contribution to improving the attractiveness of the location.