Würth will be making changes to its ORSY® packaging in 2020. The decision to do away with the little plastic window will allow us to save 22.7 metric tons of plastic film throughout the Group every year and to recycle the empty boxes as waste paper, something that was not possible in the past due to the mix of materials used. This is a small, but deliberate contribution to the current debate surrounding moves to avoid plastic and save resources.
You might wonder what options are left to improve on a screw that was first conceived 75 years ago? In 2020, Würth will be launching the fourth generation of the ASSY® high-performance screw on the market. Inspired by our quest to always offer our customers the best solution, we asked them: “What would make the ASSY even better?” Graduate engineers, wood science and technology graduates, and mechanical engineers came together to tackle this very question and developed the ASSY®4, which does an even better job of delivering what tradespeople need in their day-to-day work with its patented RW drive, improved bit locking, more precise countersinking, and optimal tightening capabilities. This means that this innovation will contribute to both our economic success and to that of our customers.
...like Museum Würth 2, which will complete the Carmen Würth Forum with the second phase of the building. This adds a museum to the ensemble of buildings designed, and now extended, by David Chipperfield Architects, making key pieces of art from the Würth Collection available to the general public. Our cultural and social activities in particular bear testimony to our conviction that companies can contribute to creating a sense of purpose in the long term, offering guidance in our globalized world, which is growing together at an ever faster pace.
Sales rose by 4.8 percent to EUR 14.3 billion in 2019, or by 4.2 percent after adjustments to reflect exchange rate effects. The Group’s operating result was down by 11.5 percent year-on-year to total EUR 770 million due to factors that left their mark on a large number of companies. Commodity prices played a key role in price developments, and we were unable to pass on the increases to our customers in full. The process of structural change in the automotive industry is also leaving its mark. As a supplier, this is a trend that is impacting us, too.