WEINHEIM, Germany—The Freudenberg Group posted record-setting sales for the fourth straight year in 2013 at $9.14 billion, an increase of 5.4 percent from 2012.
The group reported that consolidated profit, however, dropped slightly to $554.1 million from $597.2 million in 2012. The firm said the 2013 figure included one-off extraordinary items.
Freudenberg's worldwide employment rose to 39,897, up from 37,452 in 2012.
“Freudenberg is now more innovative and more successful than ever before,” said Mohsen Sohi, speaker of the board of management. “Despite a challenging economic environment and negative exchange rate effects, we have grown profitably and sustainably. Sales increased in almost all business areas.”
Freudenberg also decreased its net debt by 17 percent to about $716.5 million, said Ralf Krieger, member of the board of management.
The firm also invested about $766 million, about $316.5 million in production plant, tangible assets, buildings and intangible assets. It expanded the capacity for its Evolon brand of microfilament products in Colmar, Friance; added a new plant for cabin air filters in Chengdu, China; two logistics centers in Kaiserslautern, Germany and Potvorice, Slovakia; and a site for air filters in Jacarei, Brazil.