An incredible year!
Klaes is very successful despite Corona effects and flood disaster
2021 was an incredible year for Klaes. In addition to the Corona impact, the massive disruptions caused by the flood disaster in the Ahr valley had to be dealt with - and yet the Klaes team increased turnover by over 9% last year and achieved the best annual result in the entire history of the company. And the worldwide order income was at an even higher level.
Important reasons for the success are the broad Klaes product range and the cultivation of worldwide markets. Lars Klaes (Klaes management) is sure he is pursuing the right strategy: "The service also has to become more "digital", which is why we now have the "Klaes Web Campus" as an additional training offer for our customers". But the Klaes team is also a very important factor. It was again very impressive, says Miriam Berzen (Klaes management), how everyone worked for the company - even during the clean-up in the mud.
Houses in the water, roads impassable, bridges destroyed, no electricity, hardly any drinking water and large gaps in the mobile phone network. This was the situation after the Ahr had exceeded all record levels by metres. At Klaes, cellars were under water and parked cars were washed away, but buildings were not destroyed. However, many of the Klaes team live upstream in the Ahr valley and there the situation was even worse. Evacuations by helicopter, spending the night on the roof, high property damage and also the complete loss of house and property happened. Fortunately, however, there were no personal injuries in the Klaes team.
At Klaes itself, everything is back to normal - only the guest house still needs to be completely renovated. The situation is different for the flood-affected members of the Klaes team. Temporary accommodation, flats and houses in shell condition are often the current situation. In order to help quickly and directly, customers, partner companies, employees and also "former employees" have donated more than 125,000 €, which were paid out tax-free to the 25 people affected. Many thanks for this extraordinary support!
Just as unbelievable as this flood was the willingness to help, support, sympathy and cohesion within and outside the company. This was especially evident during the big "basement clean-out", where even employees of customers and business partners took part. And even now, when it comes to repairing the flats and houses of the employees.
The core market Germany was characterised by a stable positive development in all regions and target groups throughout the year. New- and existing customers are pursuing continuous digitalisation in their companies more and more consistently, and Klaes is the right partner, because the topic can be served comprehensively in two senses.
Turnover in the export countries also increased in 2021. Klaes achieved high growth in Poland and other Eastern European and South-Eastern European countries. In Asia and Australia, turnover increased compared to 2021, but has not yet reached the pre-Corona level. Very lucrative orders, especially in the automation sector, were realised in the Western European countries. In addition to Austria, where turnover was strong, there was also significant growth in France and Spain.
Klaes continued to benefit from the fact that digitalisation can be supported in very many areas with the broadly positioned product range at the customers. However, there is also a new digital format for learning. The Klaes Web Campus opens up a time-independent learning experience for customers with step-by-step video units incl. learning objective checks. The products often dealt with the areas of homeoffice, mobile working, document management and also telephony.
But the Klaes industry solutions in the company's own cloud were also an important module. And the diverse products of the customers, in addition to the classic window construction elements, also created additional demand: curtain wall- and window wall facades, patio roofs, cold conservatories, pergolas as well as house- and room doors. In addition, further web configurators were connected. This "data on demand" is available from several manufacturers for roller shutters, external venetian blinds, door panels and accessory items.
2022 will be the next window construction year for Klaes without "Fensterbau". In our view, the trade fair objectives cannot be achieved in the summer to the extent that the high expenditure required is justified.Klaes will nevertheless continue to successfully drive digitalisation in the industry. Important components here are the proven long-term cooperation with customers and business partners as well as the innovative solutions for the organisation of companies. Klaes will present them in its own digital trade fair starting at the "Fensterbauwoche" at the end of March.