Economic contribution

The higher the business value we can provide for our customers, the better our financial performance and the impact we can generate on our purpose of innovating for a better world. Two billion people each day enjoy foods produced by our equipment; and one billion people travel in vehicles manufactured using parts produced with our technology. Having this global relevance, we are in a unique position to turn today’s challenges into sustainable business. 


Economic contribution

The higher the business value we can provide for our customers, the better our financial performance and the impact we can generate on our purpose of innovating for a better world. Two billion people each day enjoy foods produced by our equipment; and one billion people travel in vehicles manufactured using parts produced with our technology. Having this global relevance, we are in a unique position to turn today’s challenges into sustainable business. 

Group report 2022

Good performance in an uncertain environment

In 2022, Bühler expanded its business and improved profitability in an uncertain and volatile business environment. The company was able to mitigate effects of the war in Ukraine, tense supply chains as well as soaring energy and raw material prices, while further improving its financial position with a high equity ratio and repaying the first tranche of its bond. The company continued to invest in innovation, new partnerships, education, and training. With numerous opportunities in its markets and a high order book of over CHF 2.1 billion, the company’s ambition is to continue its positive development in 2023. A key factor in achieving these successes was the impressive dedication of the Bühler employees all over the world. 



At the Group level, order intake rose 8.7% to CHF 3.3 billion and the order book was very high at CHF 2.1 billion. Turnover increased by 10.3% to CHF 3.0 billion. EBIT improved by 36.0% to CHF 199 million, reflecting an EBIT margin of 6.7% (prior year: 5.4%). Net profit strongly improved by 35.7% to CHF 154 million (prior year: CHF 113 million). 

The growth in volume came mainly from the Advanced Materials business, where order intake soared by 40.6% to CHF 871 million, nearly doubling its volume within the last two years. Within Advanced Materials, the Die Casting business showed an outstanding performance, growing orders by 60.4%. Turnover in Advanced Materials increased by 31.8% to CHF 671 million. In addition, the Consumer Foods business continued its recovery with strong order intake growth of 21.6% to CHF 710 million, and turnover growth of 13.6% to CHF 578 million. The largest business, Grains & Food, which had been particularly impacted by disrupted supply chains and a slow feed market in China, showed a solid performance. 

The segment saw order intake in 2022 of CHF 1,663 million, down 6.5%, while turnover grew by 2.6% to CHF 1,696 million, and with this managed to keep business very stable through the years of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

To keep the pace of innovation high, expenses for research and development (R&D) remained stable at CHF 141 million (4.7% of turnover) in line with the strategy to be the innovation leader in the industries in which Bühler operates. In 2022, Bühler again expanded its innovation and education ecosystem and entered into several joint ventures and partnerships that will facilitate the transition towards more efficient food and feed production and accelerate the transformation towards sustainable mobility. To strengthen its training offerings, Bühler also announced plans to build a new Grain Innovation Center, where customers and partners will develop, test, and scale sustainable and efficient solutions for grain- and feed-processing, to improve performance of lines and systems, and to continue innovating for the food- and feed-customers globally. 

In 2022, Bühler’s financial position continued to strengthen, with the equity ratio increasing by 2.6pp to 49.8% (prior year: 47.2%). An important milestone was the repayment of the first tranche of the corporate bond of CHF 180 million in December. In 2017, Bühler raised capital on the financial markets for the first time in the form of a CHF 420 million dual tranche bond to invest in its growth and innovation capabilities. The second tranche of the bond of CHF 240 million is due in 2026.  

Operating cash flow amounted to CHF 110 million and was impacted by higher profitability and an increase in absolute net working capital. In 2022, net working capital increased by CHF 92 million driven by the growth of turnover and by a targeted increase in inventory to ensure the availability of key components and stock items. Despite this, net liquidity remained on a high level of CHF 308 million compared to CHF 329 million in 2021 (-6.5%). 

Bühler’s Customer Service business (including Single Machines) also grew strongly by 11% and added substantially to the 2022 results with turnover amounting to CHF 955 million, representing a 32% share of Group turnover. Bühler offers a holistic service portfolio with seven modules from hardware, components, and spare parts to upgrading, maintenance, software, and process optimizations for systems, with the objective of improving the performance of the existing asset base of customers in terms of efficiency, safety, and sustainability. Sustainability gained importance in 2022, as services are the fastest lever to reduce energy, waste, and water in existing plants.  

The global Bühler services network comprises 105 service stations, and over 2,000 experts, including 680 field service engineers supporting 500 customers every single day. 

After the launch and initial ramp-up of the extended service portfolio, the new offering received strong market resonance and demand. For instance, remote services more than doubled in 2022 to around 800 agreements; the amount of core machines under a Total Care agreement (Bühler's inspection and maintenance services program) grew by more than 5,000, or 40%, to over 17,000. In addition, more than 130 customer production facilities are benefiting from connected digital services, which enable customers to better monitor, predict, and control production, supported by Bühler’s process experts. 

2022 again proved Bühler’s global network of 30 manufacturing sites, 91 sales offices, and Application & Training Centers in 23 countries to be a key strength of the company. Locally, also in regions with ongoing travel difficulties, Bühler experts were able to serve customers. This enabled Bühler to keep delays resulting from highly stressed supply chains at a minimum. To increase the flexibility and agility of the company’s manufacturing network even further, Bühler expanded its production capabilities in India and Vietnam to serve the Middle East and Africa more directly from these hubs. 

All regions contributed to Bühler’s turnover growth, with the Americas and Middle East Africa & India standing out. Regional growth rates and turnover shares were as follows: Asia 6% growth to 32% turnover share; Europe 3% growth to 30% turnover share; North America 17% growth to 17% turnover share; Middle East Africa & India 24% growth to 16% turnover share; and South America 26% growth to 5% turnover share. With these successes in important markets, Bühler’s global distribution of turnover is very robust and balanced. 

The positive course of Bühler’s business in 2022 is confirmation of the strategy to be a provider of sustainable solutions and services. More than ever, the world demands a turnaround in COe emissions, loss of biodiversity, and distribution of wealth. It is at the core of Bühler’s strategy to balance the needs of humanity, nature, and the economy in every decision it takes. 

Bühler’s R&D efforts and product and services development were put in the context of improved commercial and sustainability performance. The expenditure on innovation in the past 4 years amounts to more than CHF 500 million. 

In 2022, Bühler continued its innovation promise to sustainably transform value chains, launching roughly 40 new products, including six new core products.

2022 also marked an important milestone for Bühler with the announcement of next level targets with more tangible calculations, goals, and action plans. Bühler has developed a pathway to achieve a 60% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in its operations by 2030* and has committed to having solutions ready to multiply by 2025 that reduce energy, waste, and water by 50% in the value chains of its customers. 

* Greenhouse Gas Protocol Scopes 1 & 2, 2019 baseline. 

2022 marked a milestone in new partnerships involving industry synergies and technological advances aimed at mitigating climate change. With these agreements the company now has a portfolio in place to develop and offer solutions for the whole plant-based protein and food bioprocessing area. 

A new joint venture with Austrian pharmaceutical and biotechnology company ZETA was announced in June. The new company, Eridia, will engineer food and feed biotechnology plants mainly in precision fermentation and cellular agriculture. A new strategic partnership with German engineering company endeco was formed to drive forward pulse processing. In July 2022, Bühler and CN & Partners AG announced a partnership to create Circular Food Solutions Switzerland AG, a company that will produce a Swiss meat alternative based on upcycled spent 

grain from Swiss breweries. A true upcycling solution, produced locally, the product is rich in protein and fiber, and has a low environmental impact. Bühler has also worked with partners Migros and Givaudan to create The Cultured Hub, located in The Valley in Kemptthal near Zurich, to accelerate the future of cultured food processes. 

Bühler and Flottweg SE, Germany signed a cooperation agreement in June 2022 to offer full value chain solutions to customers in the plant-based protein market. An innovation and technology partnership was formed by Bühler and MMS AG in Urdorf, Zurich, in June 2022 to drive the development of high functionality ingredients for sustainable meat and dairy analogues. 

The goal of accelerating impact together with a broader ecosystem was made tangible during the Bühler Networking Days. The event’s focus was a call for immediate joint action, at scale, across a range of issues as the world demands sustainable solutions in feed, food, and mobility. Over June 27 and 28, more than 1,000 leading academics, business leaders, entrepreneurs, and innovators engaged with each other on how to improve energy and food security, reduce waste, cut water usage, lower COe emissions, improve biodiversity, rethink mobility, and close the gap on wealth distribution. Through technology, innovation, and education the company can create a more sustainable future for all. The strong resonance and 

positive feedback received following the event is a clear sign that industry has taken responsibility. Delegates had traveled from 95 countries and between them represented companies that feed 4 billion of the world’s population and provide mobility for 2 billion people. The event footprint has been estimated at 1,300 tons COe. This estimation includes flights, food, local transportation, accommodation, and infrastructure. It was compensated through projects with Restor and Climeworks. The projects were chosen to raise awareness of the importance of nature-based solutions, not only in climate contributions, but also to protect and restore biodiversity and generate incomes in rural communities. 

The economic outlook was corrected downwards in many countries for 2023, and it is assumed that several markets will go into recession. Inflation is peaking in many countries. Market volatilities and supply chain tensions are expected to continue. Bühler is well prepared with its global positioning and strong balance sheet. At the same time, the human and animal nutrition markets, as well as the automotive and technical materials markets require new technological solutions and innovations, which Bühler can provide. A carryover of more than CHF 2.1 billion orders serves as a robust starting base for the business in 2023. 

The high volatility and unpredictability of markets will likely remain, so too the tensions and shortages in global supply chains, energy, and transportation systems. On the other hand, the changing needs of the food, feed, and mobility industries, driven by the increasing demand for sustainable solutions, will provide favorable conditions for the businesses. 

For Bühler, this means keeping the innovation rate high and using the many opportunities arising from this trend. The suite of services, including digital platforms and solutions, will continue to grow and gain resonance with customers looking to address increasing sustainability demands, including Scope 1 and 2 emissions. This represents interesting growth potential as Bühler has over 1 million machines installed worldwide with about 30,000 customers.  

Bühler’s strong financial position will allow it to continue investing strategically. By strengthening the company’s global supply chain with new manufacturing hubs in India and Vietnam, customers worldwide will benefit from short delivery times and logistics routes, risk mitigation from tense supply chains, and from an improved COe footprint for the equipment delivered. In 2023, the focus will be on targeted market introductions of various innovations that were created in the past year.

Grains & Food will profit from an expanded portfolio of innovations, capabilities, and collaborations, for example, for processing plant-based protein ingredients. Additionally, the development of new applications that enable customers to serve the plant-based beverages and dairy substitutes markets is underway. And new partnerships will accelerate the future of cultured food processes. Consumer Foods will start 2023 with a strong order book, based on a very innovative portfolio mix and, with this, is expected to rebound strongly in 2023. In 2023, the Consumer Foods business segment will be integrated into the Grains & Food business. 

The global automotive industry is in a state of profound transition, driven by the need for more sustainable mobility, including electric vehicles. The Advanced Materials business is well positioned to be a key solution provider with its large die-casting cells for megacasting and range of solutions for the crucial process steps in lithium-ion battery cell production. Additionally, new technologies for optics, surface coatings, and glass-coating technologies are meeting increasing demand.

Overall, Bühler is well prepared to take another positive step in developing the business successfully in 2023, even in a very dynamic market environment.  


Our financial development

In 2022, Bühler showed robust performance, with profitable growth of 10% in turnover making it once again a CHF 3 billion company, explain Stefan Scheiber, CEO, and Mark Macus, CFO. The company successfully mitigated effects of the war in Ukraine, tense supply chains as well as soaring energy and raw material prices, while further improving its financial position with a high equity ratio. Despite repaying the first tranche of its bond, the cash position remained high, and the company continued to spend on innovation, with over CHF 400 million in R&D expenses. With a high order book of over CHF 2.1 billion, Bühler is well-prepared to continue its positive development in 2023. Watch the video to learn more.

Annual results by business

Grains & Food: stable performance

Johannes Wick, CEO Grains & Food explains Grains & Food was able to show a very robust performance in 2022 with turnover increased to CHF 1,696 million. The teams achieved many milestones that form the basis for further differentiation and more integrated and sustainable solutions in the whole range of businesses, from milling to complete process solutions for sustainable proteins. Despite numerous challenges posed by the war in Ukraine, inflation, and tense supply chains, the businesses were back up above pre-Corona levels. Watch the video to find out how Bühler’s biggest business segment continued to grow and why Johannes Wick is optimistic about 2023.

Consumer Foods: strong rebound

Germar Wacker, CEO Consumer Foods explains the rebound of the Consumer Foods business segment gained speed in 2022 with an order increase of 22% to CHF 710 million. Resumed mobility and social events stimulated consumer buying behavior, encouraging customers to invest in production capacities. Bühler’s vast network of Application & Training Centers across the globe was a strong driver in the development of new products. Watch the video to learn how Consumer Foods was able to support customers in 2022 as they accelerate their sustainability journeys, and how it will provide solutions even more comprehensively in 2023 by merging with the Grains & Food segment.

Advanced Materials: accelerated growth

Samuel Schär, CEO Advanced Materials explains Bühler's Advanced Materials business markets were very positive in 2022. Order intake grew 40.6%, setting a new record. The Leybold Optics business area celebrated its 10th anniversary in the Bühler Group in 2022, and also reached a new order intake record. The Die Casting business area saw the first orders for big carat machines C840 and C920. In Grinding & Dispersing, the success and growth of the lithium-ion battery segment continued, profiting from the acceleration of e-mobility. All Advanced Materials businesses play a crucial role in the transformation of the automotive industry, from the combustion engine to electromobility. Watch the video to learn more about Advanced Materials’ performance in 2022.

2022 in review: MLS and Services & Sales

Holger Feldhege, Chief Operating Officer, explains increasing market volatility, tense supply chains, and soaring raw material and energy prices have left their mark on the global economy and daily business, with the world becoming more dynamic over the past three years. However, the Manufacturing, Logistics & Supply Chain organization has learnt to navigate these stormy waters, to manage unpredictable events with agility and flexibility, and to plan ahead and manage into the future. Watch the video to learn how Bühler benefits from its global set up and ensure that customers reap these benefits with us. 

Samuel Schär, Chief Services & Sales Officer explains how Bühler’s Global Services & Sales organization supported its customers to overcome the challenges the global economy faced in 2022, including inflation, energy and supply chain disruptions, the Russia-Ukraine conflict, as well as the continued pandemic restrictions in China. Customer proximity was more important than ever, and, thanks to this, Customer Service had a record year with an order intake of CHF 785 million. South America grew its order intake by 60%, followed by Middle East Africa & India with an increase of 18%, and North America with 16%. Watch the video to learn more.

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