In an interview with Frankfurter Allgemaine Zeitung published November 13, manroland AG Chairman of the Board Gerd Finkbeiner discussed the company's debt position, industry consolidation and technology. Addressing the marketplace for graphic arts capital equipment, Finkbeiner said manroland and its investors were well-prepared ahead of the industry's downturn.
Despite a 32 percent decline in sales for the current fiscal year, only Euro 125 MM remains of the original Euro 654 MM purchase price in 2006. On a net basis, Finkbeiner indicated manroland was debt free in 2008 and state aid from the German government is not an issue for the company.
"Takeover and mergers have always been on the agenda in the graphic arts industry. However, we have not been in talks with Shanghai Electric," Finkbeiner said.
Vince Lapinski, CEO of manroland Inc., agrees that North American customers should be reassured of the company's financial position. "We have been saying throughout the year that manroland has planned well for the future and now we have demonstrated it. Our customers should feel confident moving forward with manroland as a strong partner in 2010."
Finkbeiner also said manroland technology has advanced significantly in the last year. The manufacturing facility in Offenbach, Germany now has the same capacity as the five original plants in the Rhine-Main area. Overall, manroland facilities are so efficient that operations can be profitable at 70-80 percent capacity, which is below the expected market demand. Finkbeiner said that although there is no current product offering, manroland maintains an interest in a cooperative effort for digital printing.