A month after the resignation of MCH Group CEO René Kamm hot on the heels of the withdrawal by the Swatch Group from MCH’s Baselworld fair, they have issued a press release outlining their first half results for 2018, future plans, and announced an interim CEO.
Effective on 4 September 2018, the Board of Directors have appointed Hans-Kristian Hoejsgaard as interim CEO of the MCH Group. Most recently (2011 – 2017) CEO of Oettinger Davidoff AG in Basel (and since then, running his own consulting firm), Hoejsgaard has a background at LVMH, George Jensen, and Timex.
For the reporting period 1 January to 30 June 2018, the MCH Group report an increase in sales and a decline in profits compared to the same time last year (the latter largely due to reduced earnings from Baselworld 2018), but in line with expectations due to an increase in operating income.
Consolidated operating income for the first half of 2018 was CHF 356.6 million, 16.7 % above the figure for the first six months of 2017 (CHF 305.6 million). The operating expenditure of CHF 330.9 million is up 20.1 % on the previous year (CHF 275.5 million). The consolidated group profit (share of MCH Group shareholders) is CHF 21.9 million (previous year CHF 26.5 million), corresponding to a group profit margin of 6.1 % (previous year 8.7 %).
As for the effects of the Swatch Group decision, the MCH Group release notes that they are currently in the throes of adjusting for this major change. Admitting that this will take them a long time, they are looking at both their business model and how to better utilise the exhibition infrastructure such as Palexpo, that the Group own. Further, the press release states “It is to be expected that, on the basis of the review to be carried out, a renewed value adjustment will need to be made for the exhibition halls in Basel that can lead to an annual loss running into the three-digit millions.”
As well as the loss of the major exhibitor from Baselworld, the Group also mention that there are two other exhibitions that will be missing for the second half of 2018 (thus affecting the second half results), due to postponement until next year. This will mean that they expect a negative single digit result for 2018.
For the full press release, go to this link.