DC motor company looks back on a successful year
The maxon motor group who produce DC motors, gearboxes, gearmotors and servo motor systems, has increased total revenue again. With 10% of the total revenue invested in research and development , an entirely new DC motor and gearhead series introduced to the market, A new production site opened and continual innovation.
maxon motor takes a look back on a successful business year. Despite a modest market development, high commodity prices and the strong Swiss franc, maxon motor have increased its revenue to 360.5 million +6.2% over the previous year. The motor company’s cash flow remained almost unchanged at CHF 36.9 million. At the end of 2012, the company employed 2,077 employees ( An increase of 58) The investments in research and development, which represent approximately 10% of the total revenue, reached a new record value. maxon introduced a completely new DCX motor and gearhead series, with the option of configuring and ordering motors, gearheads and encoders directly online.
“In the past ten years, we have doubled the revenue to CHF 360 million,” said Karl-Walter Braun at the annual media conference. The strong Swiss franc continues to be a problem for the company. On the other hand, there has been some relief regarding the prices for magnets containing rare earths. Where generating revenue is concerned, medical technology has become the strongest field, with a share of 45%, followed by industrial automation and technology (approx. 25%). “The fields of industrial automation and aerospace technology have shown positive development. The project pipeline is full and promising,” reported Karl-Walter Braun.
The maxon motor group has invested approximately CHF 35 million in infrastructure. In Hungary, a new factory was bought and in South Korea, a new production site was set up. The US headquarters was expanded to include a prototyping building and in Germany, a new manufacturing site for special gearheads is close to completion.
North America has shown great growth for motors in medical technology along with a significant increase in aerospace applications. The revenue also increased in Europe, although the north showed stronger development than the south, which is suffering from the debt crisis. With the integration of long-time sales partner, Kwapil & Co., the eastern European countries Hungary, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovenia and the Slovak Republic are now being served directly from Vienna.
The development in Asia was positive, but there were significant regional differences. The strongest regions included South Korea, India and China. In Japan, a country that is traditionally difficult for foreign providers, maxon was able to keep the revenue stable. At home, in Switzerland, the market was very robust and continued to grow thanks to medical technology and the industrial applications.
Strength in innovation.
“Almost every tenth franc that we earn in sales goes into design,” said Karl-Walter Braun. The biggest and most important challenge for our two development centres in Sachseln and Sexau was the successful launch of the next generation of DCX drives, a completely new motor and gearhead line. To manufacture these motors and gearheads, maxon has developed and produced new, flexible production equipment. “Also new for us and a first in the industry is our new CTO system (configure to order). On a computer or an iPad, our customers can select from a diverse range of options to assemble their own combination of motor, gearhead, encoder, and cable,” said Karl-Walter Braun. The motor, with all documentation, is shipped within 11 days. During configuration, the customer sees the price change resulting from each step.
Careful look towards the future
The maxon motor group has grown moderately. By comparison with the previous year 58 new jobs have been created. Today the group employs 2,077 people. The most important sales markets do not exhibit a uniform trend in 2013. While there are interesting projects in the USA and the future business development there is being rated as positive, Europe is stagnating, except the important sales market Germany. “In Asia, China is growing again. South Korea is doing well, whereas Japan remains difficult,” said Karl-Walter Braun. Due to the different signals, maxon motor is expecting 2013 revenue to be on the same level as that of the previous year.