R&M, the global Swiss developer and provider of cabling systems for high-quality network infrastructures based in Wetzikon, is looking back at one of its most successful business years ever. Since 2016 the Group has been operating on all continents. The entry to the market in the US was extremely positive. This was reported by CEO Michel Riva on the publication of the Annual Report 2016.
Last year the cabling specialist achieved group sales of CHF 229.4 million which corresponds to an increase of 11.8% compared to the previous year. Thanks to the strong growth the operative profit margin could be increased from 4.9% in the previous year to 6.6%. "Overall, we are very satisfied with the results. In our strategic segments we were able to grow above the industry average and to further increase our competitiveness," says Michel Riva.
A major step for R&M was the company's entry into the US market. At the beginning of 2016 R&M acquired REALM Communications Group, Inc. based in Milpitas, California, and successfully integrated the company in the Group as a production and sales subsidiary. This made a positive contribution to the sales growth. R&M USA Inc. supplies data center companies in Silicon Valley with fiber optic cabling systems, is establishing further sales locations in North America, modernized production in Milpitas and extended the range with copper cabling systems for local data networks. At the same time the plants in Bulgaria, Dubai, India and Poland extended their capacities. R&M now has more than 900 employees in six production facilities as well as in branches in 36 countries.
Besides the success in North America, R&M achieved double-digit sales growth in Asia and the Middle East. The development in Europe varied by country. Record results were once again achieved in Germany with a double-digit increase. In other European countries and in Russia, R&M was impacted by the challenging economic situation. The demand for cabling solutions for data centers and for the expansion of public fiber optic networks remained strong in 2016 – these are the fast growing market segments which R&M is serving with two newly launched platforms for optical fiber distribution.
"In 2016 R&M's production network achieved remarkable synergy improvements," says Michel Riva of the effects of intensified internationalization over recent years. The "mixed model production" model was introduced in all major plants in the reporting year, further increasing flexibility and productivity considerably. "The continuous optimization of the global value chain is an important factor in our intensified growth strategy," says CEO Michel Riva. "During the reporting year, the R&M Group confirmed its ability to remain on a growth course in a challenging market environment. And the Group is well positioned to continue to grow faster than the market," concludes the CEO of R&M.