Covid demand and new ventures propel growth
With a turnover of 2.721 billion euros, Kärcher was once again able to grow significantly in 2020 compared to the previous record year: The growth of the cleaning specialist was 5.6% adjusted to 8.5% for currency effects. Some of the markets with significant growth rates included Germany, Western and Eastern Europe overall, China, Japan and Australia.
Certain product areas became more important during the corona crisis. For example, there was great demand for its steam cleaners classified as “virucidal against enveloped viruses PLUS” for disinfection applications according to the effective area defined by the German Robert Koch Institute. In the Professional line, the demand for hygiene solutions rose, especially for mobile spray disinfection devices with appropriate disinfectants.
The company is expanding its digital solutions, which are aimed at demand-oriented working, as well as efficient processes in professional cleaning services. The sensor-based system of partner company Zan Compute shows, for example, that the number of cleaning cycles for a property can be reduced by around a third with a requirement analysis in real time.
In the end-customer area, Kärcher now presents the world’s first pressure washer range with app connection via Bluetooth interface (Power Control and Smart Control) for smart initial startup and use. The core element is a comprehensive application consultant, who guides you through the cleaning process and automatically transfers the appropriate settings to the device.
Another growth segment for the company is the area of municipal technology. In order to address customers more efficiently and expand its market share, Kärcher set up its own competence centre with Municipal GmbH. The Holder brand, which has belonged to the group of companies since 2019, has also been operating under this name since January 2021.