In 2023, the Healthcare Solutions business area was confronted with the almost complete loss of the COVID business. As a result, reported revenue fell in comparison with the very strong previous year to CHF 469.0 million (previous year: CHF 520.3 million), which corresponds to an organic decline of 5.2% due to the substantial nega-tive currency effect. The loss of the high-margin COVID components led to under-utilization of our recently ex-panded plants and a temporary unfavorable development of the product mix. As a result, EBIT fell to CHF 74.4 million (previous year: CHF 106.3 million) and the EBIT margin declined to 15.9% (previous year: 20.4%). Nevertheless, thanks to the measures implemented, Datwyler was able to improve the EBIT margin to 16.1% in the second half of the year despite negative seasonal effects. To assess the development of the Healthcare business, a comparison with the 2023 reporting should be drawn with 2019, the last year prior to the pandemic. With the same exchange rates and adjusted for the acquisition of Xinhui and the low COVID revenue in 2023, organic revenue growth amounts to 37.6%, corresponding to strong average annual growth of the regular business of 8.3%.
The Industrial Solutions business area increased its revenue by 8.2% to CHF 688.2 million (previous year: CHF 636.1 million) in 2023. QSR, acquired in 2022, was included for a twelve-month period for the first time. Adjusted for acquisition effects and considerable negative currency effects, organic growth amounted to 3.6%. In absolute terms, EBIT increased to CHF 46.0 million (previous year: CHF 42.9 million). This corresponds to an unchanged EBIT margin of 6.7%. For the year overall, operational improvements and positive effects from the restructuring measures were more than offset by shifts in the product mix and higher one-off energy costs, especially in the Swiss plant. However, in the second half of the year and despite negative seasonal effects, the positive effects led to an improvement in the EBIT margin to 7.5%, which clearly exceeds the figure of the first six months (5.9%).
Datwyler has a comprehensive sustainability strategy with twelve focus topics structured in line with the globally established ESG concept (Environmental, Social, and Governance). Each topic bundles activities and projects, and contains clear responsibilities with measurable objectives for effective management. This way, Datwyler takes account not only of its impacts on the environment and society, but also the effects of ecological, social, and regulatory developments on the company. To the benefit of its stakeholders, the company has driven forward its sustainability activities, despite the difficult environment. This is evident, among other things, in the EcoVadis gold standard, which places Datwyler among the top 5% of the more than 100’000 companies analyzed. The positive ratings from regularly conducted employee and customer surveys also motivate Datwyler.
Considering currency-adjusted revenue, Datwyler further reduced the consumption of heating fuels, electricity as well as waste volume per revenue unit again in the year under review. The share of electricity from renewable sources has increased further to 38.3%. With a new human rights guideline and updated code of conduct, the company is raising awareness among employees, suppliers, and customers of possible human rights risks in its own operations and along the value chain. In addition, selected sustainability information is now subject to a limited assurance by the auditors.