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Division Reports

The Division accounted for 53% of Oerlikon’s sales and 55% of Group operational EBITDA in 2020. The Division, comprised of the brands Oerlikon Balzers, Oerlikon Metco and Oerlikon AM, were heavily impacted by pandemic-induced weakness in markets, particularly in the aerospace sector. Recovery in automotive and tooling were noted in the second half of the year.

1.1 bn

1.2 bn




87 CHF million 

Orders for the Division were CHF 1 144 million, down 22.1% from the prior year’s CHF 1 468 million. Division sales came in 19.6% lower to CHF 1 197 million from CHF 1 488 million in 2019. At constant exchange rates, Division sales were CHF 1 261 million. 

Operational EBITDA was CHF 177 million, or 14.7% of sales, compared to CHF 253 million, or 16.9% of sales in 2019. The lower year-over-year operational EBITDA margin was attributed to the decrease in sales. The unadjusted EBITDA margin was 12.0%. The benefits of the restructuring program can be seen in the improvement in the sequential operational EBITDA margins. The structural component of the programs are expected to yield improvements to the Division’s operating profitability. Operational EBIT was CHF 10 million in 2020, or 0.9% of sales (2019: CHF 86 million, or 5.8% of sales) and unadjusted EBIT was CHF -32 million or -2.7% of sales (2019: CHF 65 million, or 4.4% of sales).

Key Developments

The Surface Solutions Division saw sales decline across all regions in 2020 as business, consumption and demand in many countries and regions were impacted by lockdowns. Europe accounted for 45% of the Division’s sales in 2020. China contributed 13%, while India’s portion of sales was at 3%. North America saw 20% of Division sales, while sales from the rest of the world remained at 4%.

Oerlikon Balzers’ RS50 coating system was qualified by Airbus for meeting its technical and industrial requirements. The RS 50 coating system is capable of performing BALINIT C coating, which is a non-hazardous and REACH-compliant alternative to hard chrome plating that is applied to aerospace components to reduce surface fatigue, withstand wear and high loads.

Nadcap, the National Aerospace and Defense Contractors Accreditation Program, is a global program within the aerospace industry that validates compliance with industry standards, best practices and customer requirements. Oerlikon Balzers obtained Supplier Merit Status for its center in Ferrières-en-Brie, France, to extend the reaccreditation audit to 18 months. Oerlikon Metco was granted the Nadcap accreditation for its Materials Testing Laboratory in Plymouth, Michigan, USA. With this accreditation, Oerlikon Metco has four out of its five North American materials production locations Nadcap-certified, underpinning the high Oerlikon standards and affirming customers’ confidence.

Toward the end of 2020, the Division acquired the thermal insulation systems business from Crosslink, Germany, to add thermal insulation material solutions for Battery Electric Vehicle to the Division’s portfolio.