DIEFFENBACHER earned nearly 400 million euros in sales in 2021 due to high demand for new wood-based panel production plants, diversification of its forming business, growing customer interest in sustainable solutions and the introduction of a smart plant concept that gives manufacturers more insight into their production and processes.
“Despite many restrictions related to COVID-19, it was an excellent year for DIEFFENBACHER. We served our customers just as well as in the times before the pandemic, and that makes me very proud of our team,” said CEO Christian Dieffenbacher. “Each of our three business units—Wood, Forming and Recycling—performed well and received significant new orders from customers.”
The Wood business unit recorded high demand for new plants on nearly every continent. In Europe, DIEFFENBACHER received an increasing number of orders for plants that produce special products such as wood-fiber insulation boards and plants that deploy advanced environmental technology solutions for greater sustainability.
“Our customers are increasingly opting for complete plants supplied by a single source,” Christian Dieffenbacher reported. An example is HOMANIT Group’s order for a new plant in Pagirai, Lithuania, that combines environmental technology solutions with the fiber dryer and a 50 MW energy plant to ensure minimal emissions. DIEFFENBACHER also received four orders for plants to produce wood fiber insulation boards used for ecologically smart and climate-friendly insulation in house construction.
The diversification of the Forming business unit (formerly Composites business unit), which DIEFFENBACHER began at the end of 2020 with its reentry into the metal industry, proved successful. Orders for new plants and for service, spare parts and modernizations, particularly those for the metal industry, significantly exceeded expectations. Meanwhile, the recovery of markets in Europe and North America increased customer interest in new plants and major expansions. An example is the purchase of an LFT-D line and 2,500-tonne press by Continental Structural Plastics (CSP), one of the world’s largest manufacturers of composite components, for the expansion of its facility in Sarepta, Louisiana, in the U.S.
The Recycling business unit attracted customers with sustainable solutions in the areas of wood recycling, alternative fuels and “Waste2Product.” The business unit designs and supplies plants that process recycled wood for particleboard production—using state-of-the-art sorting technology to achieve purity levels of up to 99.5%—and plants that produce pallets from 100% recycled plastic materials. Another highlight was an order for an innovative plant concept for producing insulating boards from polyurethane waste.
As part of its new CEBRO smart plant concept, DIEFFENBACHER introduced in September the digital platform called EVORIS. EVORIS gives manufacturers more insight into their production and processes. AI-supported analysis of live data is just one way that EVORIS helps plant operators better understand and control their plants and make important decisions faster. Along with EVORIS, CEBRO supports advanced plant engineering solutions, operational excellence and sustainability initiatives. First developed for the Wood business unit, CEBRO and EVORIS will successively be available to DIEFFENBACHER Forming and Recycling customers in 2022.
“Sustainability and digitalization will remain our primary focus,” explained Christian Dieffenbacher. “The trend toward climate-friendly construction with wood and wood-based panels and their recyclability is very much to our liking, as is the general upswing in the construction industry.”
DIEFFENBACHER expects to close 2021 with sales of nearly 400 million euros. “We want to gradually expand this to over 500 million euros over the next few years,” said Christian Dieffenbacher. “We can accomplish this by continuing to offer innovative and compelling products, supported by qualified and committed employees. A double-digit million euro investment at our headquarters in Eppingen will help us achieve these growth targets.”
With 16 production, service and sales locations worldwide, DIEFFENBACHER is geographically close to customers while also offering a global production and supply network. “That’s more important than ever today because it means that supply chain interruptions or insufficient availability of important resources rarely affect us. Our customers can be confident in our ability to supply them in the best way possible,” asserted Christian Dieffenbacher.
“Our innovative products give us a global presence in all relevant markets, and we have further sharpened our profile as a complete plant supplier,” he concluded. “As a result, I’m optimistic that we’ll be able to achieve a sales volume of around 450 million euros in 2022.”