Despite the adverse economic conditions, we are satisfied with the development of the past year. We were able to successfully meet the challenges facing the Melitta Group’s business fields – especially from the ongoing coronavirus pandemic – and continued to drive forward our numerous initiatives and projects. These are mainly focused on international expansion, as well as investment in future growth segments and in the digital transformation of our commercial processes. In spite of developments on the commodity markets, the Melitta Group not only increased its sales volumes and market shares, but also achieved year-on-year revenue growth and satisfactory pretax earnings on a par with the previous year. Compared to the previous year, there was a slight decrease in the return on net capital employed. Capital expenditures were slightly more restrained than in the previous year. Net financial debt is within the forecast range.
In addition, we made successful progress in many areas of our sustainability activities. These include, for example, the expansion of our range of sustainable products, the launch of several Group-wide sustainability projects, and the further development of our key performance indicators. We provide more detailed information on this topic in our Sustainability Report and in our Declaration of Conformity with the German Sustainability Code.
Financial and non-financial performance indicators
Melitta Group’s corporate management system is geared toward long-term, value-oriented, and profitable growth. To this end, we have defined specific controlling processes. Our key performance indicators are sales revenue, EBIT, and return on net capital employed (EBIT as a ratio of average net capital employed).
In addition to these financial performance indicators, Chief Corporate Management also monitors non-financial figures. These performance indicators relate in particular to our product and supply chain responsibility, our environmental footprint, our social responsibility, and our responsibility for employees. The definition of these indicators is based on the relevant national and international standards as well as on their meaningfulness with regard to the achievement of our sustainability targets.
The implementation of the Melitta Group’s growth strategy requires an increase in human resources in various areas of the Group. Consequently, an annual average of 5,904 people were employed by Melitta in the reporting period. This corresponds to a year-on-year increase of 1.0% and demonstrates the necessary investment in our internal structures and expertise for the Group’s continued growth.