The Zeiser Division reported net revenue of EUR 43.9 million in the 2018 financial year. The decline of some 12% compared to the previous year (EUR 50.2 million) was due to the absence of the business segments sold in the final quarter of the year under review. Operating earnings (EBIT) before special items amounted to EUR -1.0 million, an improvement on the previous year’s outcome (EUR -1.8 million). Operating earnings (EBIT) in 2018 amounted to EUR -7.4 million (EUR -6.0 million in 2017) due to special charges following the sale of parts of Atlantic Zeiser’s business.
When comparing the financial statistics for 2018 with the equivalent historical figures it should be borne in mind that the Zeiser Division’s business activities underwent fundamental changes in the year under review. Until September 30, 2018, these comprised the business segments of banknote serialisation, card personalisation systems and packaging. Since the sale of activities in the business segments of card personalisation systems and packaging together with the holding in Tritron GmbH to the Italian Coesia Group the division has focused exclusively on the former banknote serialisation business segment since October 1, 2018.
The parts of Atlantic Zeiser’s business sold to Coesia generated net revenue of approx. EUR 26 million up to September 30, 2018, with negative operating earnings.
With effect from October 1, 2018, the Zeiser Division has been focused on the core activity of serialising banknotes and security documents and has adjusted all business processes accordingly. By taking this step, Zeiser is concentrating on the company’s profitable core with a strong position on international markets and a long-standing tradition. In the case of the core product of numbering systems Zeiser controls the entire value chain from design through manufacture, assembly, marketing and sales, to after sales services. The serialisation of passports and security documents forms a further field of operations, where laser and chip programming as well as digital inkjet printing are utilised in addition to the above-mentioned technologies. Zeiser cooperates with technology partners for these applications.
In the context of its reoriented business activities the company succeeded in acquiring several large projects in the course of 2018. In particular, new projects in the field of passport personalisation were secured in the second half of 2018 after prolonged reluctance to invest on the part of customers. This resulted in a large order backlog at year-end, which ensures a firm workload for the initial months of 2019. Breakeven operating results were already generated in the final quarter of 2018. Segregating Zeiser’s field of operations from overall business activity in 2018 results in isolated net revenue of EUR 17.9 million, equivalent to approx. 41% of total net revenue for 2018. Future sales potential for the company is foreseen at some EUR 20 million with clearly positive earnings.
Following the clear strategic reorientation of the Zeiser Division in the year under review, the focus in 2019 will be on the sustained implementation of the new business processes and the organisation. Alongside maintaining and expanding the company’s dominant market position, cost structures are to be optimised and business opportunities offering synergies pursued.