February 9, 2013 and it's been exactly a year since the Manroland Sheetfed Group emerged from the train-wreck that was Manroland AG. So how is "the man behind Manroland", British industrialist Tony Langley's latest venture faring one year on? Crista Baxter reports.
Tony Langley is smiling. In his Chairman’s Review of the Langley Holdings PLC Annual Report & Accounts 2012, which were published the first week in February, the eponymous founder, CEO and Chairman of this remarkable engineering group has much to smile about. It has been another record year for the group he has nurtured since 1975.
Revenues are €527 million, operating profits €116 million, bolstered €25 million by uplift to market value of Manroland’s Offenbach property portfolio, and the group remains free of debt, reporting €208 million of cash in hand at the year-end. Manroland Sheetfed meanwhile, reported to be “standing on its own feet” in Langley’s half-year statement, “continued to do so in the second half”. The Manroland Sheetfed Group, which comprises over 40 companies world-wide, is not included in the Langley figures, the press builder will report its figures in March and it is planned to incorporate the Group into Langley Holdings later this year.
Looking closely into the accounts it can be seen that Langley paid around €80 million for the Manroland Sheetfed Group last February - €21 million for the Offenbach properties, roughly €59 million for everything else. What’s not clear is what he got for that on day one but the pro-forma Manroland accounts at 31st December 2012 included in the Chairman’s Review are showing net assets of €80million, after borrowing €57 million from Langley Holdings. Add the €25 million fair value adjustment on the German property in Langley Holdings’ books and the total net assets are €105 million; around €45 million of that in cash. Presumably the discount to net asset value was substantially more on day-one; the business has been re-structured since and only reached an underlying break-even towards the end of the year. Going forward Langley says he does not expect a significant contribution to Group results from Manroland in 2013; “….that will come later” he says, but with the press builder now structured to break even on €350 million of sales and having achieved €358 million in 2012, he expects to see “…something of an improvement in 2013.”
One year on, things are certainly different at the new Manroland Sheetfed. Langley and his team have been physically present in Offenbach for much of 2012 and it shows. Gone is the top-heavy AG management with its Vorstandt, Vice-Presidents, Executive Vice- Presidents and Senior Executive Vice-Presidents, along with their endless meetings, memos and corporate expense accounts. In its place, a board headed by Langley himself, a few trusted lieutenants and, sole survivor of the former manroland AG senior management, Rafael Penuela – now CEO. Around the place managers stifled by years of bureaucracy are getting on with well, “managing”. And on the shop floor there’s an air of optimism. “One year ago, before Herr Langley came along we had no future, today we have a future” said one worker.