For the 2020 financial year, the AMAZONE Group exceeded a sales revenue of 500 million Euros. The agricultural and groundcare machinery manufacturer achieved a 15% increase in sales worldwide, compared to the previous year.
The family-run company has placed its total revenue for 2020 at 537 million Euros (2019: €467 million). By doing so, AMAZONE has achieved the highest revenue in its 138-year history. Despite the limitations of the coronavirus pandemic, the company managed to considerably increase its sales. “This is an excellent result and a great success for the entire AMAZONE Group and our partners,” stated Christian Dreyer and Dr. Justus Dreyer. “During the last financial year, the entire team has done its absolute best to maintain normal operations throughout the coronavirus pandemic. Thanks to the strong commitment and discipline of all our employees, and together with our sales partners, we were able to prevent any delays in production and fulfil all our orders.”
The company’s broad international positioning in particular played a role in achieving this positive result. With an export proportion of over 80%, and a wide product portfolio for customers of all sizes, AMAZONE benefited from an advantageous position on all the major export markets. Agricultural machinery sales were particularly successful in Germany, Denmark, Belgium, Russia and Austria. The company also achieved excellent sales in France, Poland and Great Britain, once again.
The number of employees remained stable throughout the year, and is currently at 1,900 employees worldwide.
Despite the challenging conditions of the coronavirus pandemic during the last year, AMAZONE succeeded in completing various important investment projects as planned. For example, the new spare parts centre – the “Global Parts Center” – opened at the Tecklenburg-Leeden site. The Centre’s increased storage capacity and brand new, state-of-the-art logistics concept, resulting in significantly shorter lead times, will ensure excellent service worldwide. In order to expand its international sales activities, AMAZONE opened a new subsidiary in Ukraine. The new location in Kiev will offer local customers improved contact when purchasing machinery and increased service levels.
In total, the company’s investments in fixed assets in 2020 were in the tens of millions. More than 6% of its turnover was invested in research and development. This year, a major expansion of the Bramsche site is planned. The large machinery production plant off the BAB A1 motorway will be expanded with 8,000 sq. m. of new floor area.
In addition, AMAZONE remains committed to its plans to further develop its product range. AMAZONE has already responded to growing demand for precision agriculture with numerous innovative solutions. In the fertilisation sector, for example, the sensor-controlled “ArgusTwin” lateral distribution system monitors the influence of changing fertiliser properties and automatically optimises the spread pattern. Another example is the “WindControl” system, which takes into account the effect of wind and automatically adjusts the spread pattern to compensate. This prevents over- or under-fertilisation.
Pioneering precision technology can also be found in the plant protection sector. “AmaSelect” electric individual nozzle control, combined with “GPS-Switch” automatic part-width section control, enables part-width sections of only 50 cm. This prevents up to 85% of overlaps in wedge-shaped fields or on headlands, and saves up to 10% on plant protection agent cost.
The large number of variants in the soil tillage product range, including its range of ploughs, achieved extremely favourable sales figures. The same applies to large-area seed drills which were also well-received in several markets, thanks to the many different sowing techniques possible. In precision seeding technology, AMAZONE has set new benchmarks in precision and speed with the new Precea.
Schmotzer Hacktechnik, which has belonged to the AMAZONE Group since 2019, also yielded positive developments. Mechanical weed control is growing in importance, thanks to extremely precise camera, GPS and control technology, and the resulting increased efficiency.
Since June 2020, AMAZONE has been conducting a long-term arable farming trial on the experimental farm in Wambergen, with the aid of Schmotzer hoes. Titled “Controlled Row Farming” (CRF), a brand new arable farming system is being trialled on the farm, in which every crop establishment measure takes place in relation to a fixed row.
AMAZONE’s goal is to intensify the further development of modern precision technology for increased protection of the climate, natural world and environment, while ensuring maximum yields and reducing costs. An important aspect of this is the digitalisation and networking of all operational processes. “AMAZONE 4.0 is the keyword for our contribution in the field of software, electronics and sensor systems for increased precision, user comfort and transparency,” say the owners. “Our strength is our electronics expertise in the form of an experienced team of developers, who now even software programme in-house.”
Intelligent crop production
Overall, the company foresees many future changes in “intelligent crop production”, with great potential for the company and its sales partners. These range from modernised planting and sowing processes, variety selection and more varied crop rotations, all the way through to the growing of catch crops and undersown crops.
AMAZONE’s product strategy has been well-received by farmers, a fact that is reflected by the annually published Image Barometer of the DLG (German Agricultural Society). In the recently published survey, AMAZONE ranked in fourth place and achieved the best image rating of any medium-sized machinery manufacturer in the agricultural technology sector.
“Unfortunately, many agricultural machinery exhibitions and industry events, which would normally provide us with important contact points for the presentation of our innovations, are being cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic,” report the Dreyers. “We are trying to compensate for this with our strong, ubiquitous sales team and dealer network. Besides this, we are continuing to expand our digital communication channels. Our new website, which was redesigned last year, provides information and ways to contact us in a user-friendly layout. In addition, a 360-degree virtual tour provides an insight into the latest product lines of our agricultural and groundcare machinery ranges. The use of various digital service tools has become very well-established in our relationship with our specialist dealers.”
The two owners are optimistic about the forecast for 2021: “As we speak, incoming orders in all product areas are doing well. Accordingly, we can be very positive about the first half of 2021. However, the ongoing pandemic, persistent economic challenges and the ever-changing political situation may negatively affect the economy. In addition, we are currently faced with disproportionate price increases and bottlenecks from our suppliers. What’s more, the agricultural sector is facing an increased number of extreme weather events, due to climate change. On the other hand, global demand for high-quality foods continues to grow.
Despite all these uncertainties, we expect sales to remain at a similar level to last year in 2021.”