BSH to suspend factory production but reports of impressive 2019 turnover

BSH will temporarily suspend production operations at its factories in Europe, Turkey and North America.

The manufacturer said in a statement this week it is experiencing a significant decline in demand, affecting almost all product categories and markets.

As a result, the Board of Management will suspend production for an expected period of three weeks, while the company will strive to continue with delivery of products to customers.

Production in the BSH factories in Europe will halt on Saturday (28 March), although in Turkey it’s expected on 4 April, while in North America it’s next Monday (30 March).

“This could also have an impact on employees who are not directly employed in production or at other locations,” the company said in its statement. “Employees will be informed about the planned actions in a timely manner.”

It added that it will use appropriate measures to enable increased protection of all employees against the risk of infection by the coronavirus.

“Third-highest turnover level in the company’s history”

Meanwhile, BSH also recently reported in a trading statement that turnover in 2019 reached the third-highest level in the company’s history, at €13.2 billion, though down 1.2 percent from 2018. This was “despite considerable challenges,” the home appliance manufacturer said.

In addition, R&D expenditures rose to €713 million last year. At 5.4 percent of turnover, they surpassed the record from 2018 (five per cent).

“The focus remains on digital technologies such as software to control connected home appliances, voice control, machine learning and artificial intelligence,” the company said.

In 2020, the company will be putting the first appliances with its new microprocessor-based SystemMaster technology on the market – including Cookit, the multifunctional kitchen machine with cooking function, already introduced at IFA 2019.

Also this year, BSH CEO, Uwe Raschke (above), said in the statement that all the company’s sites will become climate-neutral by expanding its own renewable energy production to be more energy efficient. This will save the equivalent of 2.8 per cent of its total energy consumption compared to 2017 and help to reduce BSH’s CO2 emissions by 5,000 metric tons. Through investment of some €100 million, by 2030 the company hopes to reduce CO2 emissions from its own production by another 20 per cent.

“Due to a wide range of economic and political uncertainties, as well as the unforeseeable consequences of the coronavirus disease, we can already tell today that 2020 will be at least as challenging as the previous year,” said Mr Raschke.

Also, Dr. Carla Kriwet will take over as CEO of BSH in July.