Italian Ceramic Machinery Market Continues Growth
These results were reportedly driven by excellent performance in both the domestic and international markets.
The Italian ceramic machinery sector closed 2016 with a 2.3% increase in sales to €2.028 billion (approximately $2.3 billion), following three years of growth and marking an all-time record turnover, according to Acimac. These results were reportedly driven by excellent performance both in the domestic market (+ 4.5%), bringing turnover in Italy to €481.3 million (~ $550.4 million), and in international markets (+ 1.6%), which in 2016 generated revenues of €1,546.4 million (~ $1,767.8 million), 76.3% of the total.
“The 2016 results reflect our companies’ leadership position and the strength of an industry that is capable of maintaining a presence in all world markets and delivering innovations tailored to the needs of different types of customers in keeping with the latest Industry 4.0 trends,” said Paolo Sassi, chairman of Acimac.
2016 marked the fourth consecutive growth year for the Italian market. Investments made by Italian clientele generated turnover growth of more than €100 million (~ $114.3 million). Employment saw an equally positive trend, rising by 6.2% (compared to + 0.4% the previous year) to a total of 6,614 people. At the same time, the number of companies operating in the sector remained more or less stationary at 147 (compared to 148 in 2015).
The Italian ceramic machinery industry continues to be highly export oriented. The largest area of export in 2016 was the European Union, with turnover of €342 million (~ $389.8 million), representing 22.1% of the total and a 23.3% increase compared to 2015. Southeast Asia dropped 14.3% to second place, with 15.4% of total turnover, down from €277.9 million (~ $316.8 millon) to €238.2 million (~ $271.5 million). In third place, the Middle East saw 25.1% growth, with €233.5 million (~ $266.1 million) and 15.1% of global exports. Exports to other regions performed as follows:
- North America, 8.5% growth to €174.5 million (~ $198.9 million)
- Eastern Europe, 3.9% growth to €158.9 million (~ $181.1 million)
- South America, down 14.6% to €158.7 million (~ $180.8 million)
- Africa, down 27.1% to €148.6 million (~ $169.3 million)
- China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, up 20.4% to €90.8 million (~ $103.5 million)
- Oceania, with a turnover of €1.2 million (~ $1.4 million)
Sales to tile manufacturers continue to make up the largest share of the sector’s turnover. In 2016, the turnover generated in this sector grew by 4.1% to a total of €1,702.4 million (~ $1,940.1 million), equivalent to 84.1% of the total.
Sales to brick and roof tile manufacturers reportedly fell from €156.1 (~ $177.9 million) to €152.8 million (~ $174.2 million), a decline of 2.1%, though it remained the second-largest client sector. Sales to the sanitaryware sector also fell, dropping from €126.9 million (~ $144.6 million) by 9.9% to €114.4 million (~ $130.4 million), mainly due to a sharp decline in sales in the Italian market (down 50.3%).
In fourth place came sales to producers of refractories, with an 11.8% decline in 2016. As a result, total turnover fell from €39.3 million (~ $44.8 million) to €34.7 million (~ $39.6 million) , in spite of 84.2% growth in the Italian market. The technical ceramics sector also saw a significant decline, with sales down 26.7% to €5 million (~ $5.7 million). By contrast, sales of machinery for tableware and giftware rose by 2.5%, largely due to the strong performance of the domestic market.
The initial forecasts for the current year are reportedly positive. Figures for the first quarter of the year, published by the Acimac Research Department, indicate 13.3% growth, driven by record performance in the Italian market (an increase of 60.6%).
“Many of our companies have an almost completely full order book for 2017 and are beginning to plan deliveries for early 2018,” said Sassi. “We therefore expect to see slight end-of-year growth with respect to the already excellent results of 2016.”
For more information, visit www.acimac.com.