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Annual Report 2020

Chairman and CEO statement

2020 provided us with the opportunity to prove our reliability in critical times to all of our stakeholders: customers, employees, bondholders, business partners, and owners. It was our highest priority to ensure the health of our employees and others, while also securing operations, supply chains, deliveries, and services to our customers. From a financial point of view, we even strengthened our stability by increasing our equity ratio as well as our financial reserves.   

2020 in review

Outlook: bounded optimism

Still being in the midst of the pandemic, we do not expect a fast recovery of markets and a quick return to normal. In fact, we see a “new normal” arising with far more digital applications, virtual communication, and remote solutions. In our view, the pandemic not only sped up digitalization but also the trends towards a bipolar world with the two centers of power being China and the United States.  

The new Asian agreement Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) which reflects a third of global trade is a strong step into this direction. Other important trends which affect our business is the increasing demand of sustainable solutions, be it by CO2 reduced emissions, nutritious and healthy food, or clean mobility.

We are convinced that Bühler is very well positioned even in this volatile market environment. To gain even more flexibility and agility, we are continuing to work on our business excellence, among others by starting the migration of our ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) systems onto SAP S/4HANA within the next years. For 2021, we expect our business volume and profitability to stay stable. We are now laying ground to return to profitable growth. 


Customer stories

Evolution of an industry

Once you open the digital door, there are so many possibilities that open up and one of them is enviromental.

Simon Tiedge, Director of Technical Milling at Miller Milling

Miller Milling has transformed into one of the world’s most digitally advanced milling companies in a whirlwind year. With a vision to lead the evolution of the milling industry, grow their business, and contribute to a sustainable society, the company embarked on its journey to harness the potential of connectivity.

When speed saves lives

Even when the pandemic passes, hospitals will be expected to ensure that they have enough capacity to meet intensive care ventilator needs.

Phil Rawson, Managing Director at MRT Castings

In March, just when the coronavirus pandemic had begun to hit Europe hard, MRT Castings was faced with an urgent demand for more parts to produce critical care ventilators. Only an additional die-casting cell could drastically increase production and MRT couldn’t wait months for the machine to be built and shipped. Together with Bühler, the team managed to get a new cell up and running in just five weeks.

From microchips to nanochips

I think Leybold Optics found us very challenging at times, but in the end this was they key to the breakthrough and both sides learned a great deal.

Dr. Sergiy Yulin, Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering IOF

Everyone’s talking about a new technology in the semiconductor industry – EUV lithography. It uses extremely short-wave ultraviolet light to produce microchips in the tiniest format that can process enormous quantities of data in computers and smartphones. Bühler is playing a role in this development.

EUV Lithography - Coating example EUV Lithography - Coating example Image: Mirror for EUV lithography systems, Copyright: Deutscher Zukunftspreis / Ansgar Pudenz / Fraunhofer

“Chicken” from plants

It is great for us to have a technology partner like Bühler at our side, one that has constructively supported us.

Eric Stirnemann, Co-founder of Planted Foods AG

Four university graduates from Zurich have quickly conquered the Swiss plant-based food market with their start-up, Planted Foods AG. Their flagship product, planted.chicken, convinces due to its amazingly genuine texture and because it contains absolutely no artificial additives. With Bühler as their technology partner, the four founders have ventured into industrial production.

Annual Announcement 2020

Watch the Bühler Annual Announcement 2020.

Monday, Feb. 15, 2021

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