BLANCO continues to grow

The Blanco Group finished the 2019 financial year with consolidated net sales of 395 million euros. Despite a weakening economic situation across the globe and growing competition, the company, based in southwestern Germany, has been able to achieve slight growth worldwide. Once again, the drivers of growth have been Silgranit sinks and kitchen mixer taps.

The managing directors at the annual press conference

Within Germany, the international specialist for water hub solutions in household kitchens achieved sales of 142 million euros. This equates to a 3.5 % increase on the previous year. In doing so, Blanco was able to build upon its leading role within a stagnating kitchen market. By contrast, the international regions showed very different trends, in some cases shaped by volatile economic conditions. Sales in markets outside Germany totalled 253 million euros for 2019, putting them at almost the same level as the previous year. This amounts to 64 % of total sales. Even though the positive trend within Germany compensated for the slump in sales in some of the international markets, the expectations were higher, declared CEO Frank Gfrörer on the occasion to the annual press conference. "After ten years of continuous growth, we are experiencing intensified competition both here in Germany and in international business. We will have to step up our efforts more than ever before to achieve our ambitious goals going forward."

Supporting trade partners: from product to system

Blanco has long been one of the leading sink and mixer tap manufacturers, impressing millions of customers all over the world with high-quality products and reliable service, but now the company is going one step further. "We want to be able to provide our trade partners with an even better package of services in future, so as to help them sell through to customers," says Gfrörer. As the kitchen water hub specialist, the manufacturer is concentrating even more intensely on this central area in the kitchen. The aim is to establish Blanco as the brand for seamlessly integrated solutions, delighting consumers with hands-on experience of the convenience and benefits that are to be had when preparing food, drinking water and cleaning. This is what the 'Blanco Unit' is all about. It embodies holistic solutions that go beyond the product itself and are intended to create a sustainable brand experience for consumers, with tailored services and information, in all of the global key markets.

 daily experienced comfort and benefits around preparing, drinking and cleaning

Delighting consumers with smart products and services

Blanco has successfully enhanced its kitchen mixer tap range with attractive products like the new generation of smart mixer taps featuring special functions like touch-free operation, the exact amount of water you want, and the option of choosing filtered or boiling water. In Germany, a special installation service provided by Technical Customer Service assists trade partners with installing such high-quality water systems. Furthermore, Blanco has expanded its array of models and colours for the globally successful Silgranit sink range. The new and intense black colour has already made its debut in some international markets.

Investing in the future: a production network for Silgranit sinks

Blanco invested 29.3 million euros last year. The largest share was accounted for by the new plant for Silgranit sinks in Most, Czech Republic. It was completed in late 2019. This new plant will relieve some of the production capacity at the Sinsheim plant, which was previously at its limits. The now-expanded production network, comprising Sinsheim (Germany), Most (Czech Republic) and Toronto (Canada), provides a framework for further growth.

Employees at the Sinsheim factory

Growing with outstanding employees

The company had 1,515 employees in average. Blanco's adherence to the very highest standards of HR management has been confirmed by its renewed certification by the Top Employers Institute. Real appreciation and an approach based on mutual trust have always been essential to the company culture, spanning different areas of the business, hierarchies and international borders. Spurred on by Blanco's rapid growth over recent years and the greater complexity that this has brought to international collaboration within the Group, the catalogue of values has now been revised to establish new points of focus for all employees. Summing up the new compass of values, CFO Rüdiger Böhle, who is also in charge of HR management, says, "the new global corporate values, which apply to all of us as we work together, form the basis for delighting our customers and trade partners worldwide with superb products and services."
According to the CFO, the extensive training opportunities, needs-based working hours models, and holistic health management that goes beyond existing standards, are all testament to the high level of social responsibility that the company demonstrates toward its employees. High-quality development programs such as the international potential-boosting STEP program, which was recently successfully completed, focus on training young people who are particularly keen to develop their career for new responsibilities within the Blanco Group.

2020: delivering products throughout the coronavirus crisis

The current financial year is being shaped by the global coronavirus outbreak. Blanco reacted very quickly and adapted its processes to the situation. "The health and safety of our employees was a top priority right from the very start," says Andreas Ostermann von Roth, COO and Head of the Covid-19 Taskforce at Blanco. "At the same time, we succeeded in ensuring that we could continue to provide service and deliveries to our customers worldwide. No expense was spared over this – we were, and still are, able to deliver at any time. We do not foresee any coronavirus-related delays to deliveries in the future, either." Internally, the focus has been on coping with the crisis. Incoming orders have dropped over recent weeks due to the lockdown measures. "We are adapting our capacity flexibly to market demand, using options like short-time hours to do so." The COO believes that this period is really proving Blanco's strengths. Sales in the first quarter of 2020 were largely in line with planning. Overall, however, Frank Gfrörer believes that the company can expect a significant drop in sales due to the pandemic. "That said, we are perfectly primed for the future global orientation of the brand, and our employees are really engaged. Despite the crisis, our goal remains to make Blanco a byword for seamlessly integrated water hubs in high-quality kitchens."

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Contact Persons

Antje Hilbert
Tel: +49 7045 44-81404
Fax: +49 7045 44-81195
Antje.Hilbert@blanco.de

Hans-Dieter Radke
Tel: +49 7045 44-81409
Fax: +49 7045 44-81195
Hans-Dieter.Radke@blanco.de

Stefan Kohl
Head of Corporate Communications
Tel: +49 7045 44-81584
Fax: +49 7045 44-81195
Stefan.Kohl@blanco.de

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