Demand for Rational combi steamers in North America was a massive factor in the company’s global growth last year, with preliminary results revealing that it recorded sales of €778m ($883m) in 2018.
The haul represents an improvement of 11% on the previous year – and 13% with currency adjustments factored in – following growth in all its regional markets.
It means that the German firm was selling almost $2.5m worth of ovens a day last year, an all-time high for the business. Overall it ended the year having sold €76m ($86m) more units than it did in the prior 12 months.
Bosses at the company said the growth reflected the global strength of its business. North America, where revenues soared 20%, and China, which made an “above-average” revenue contribution to expansion, were among the big winners.
The Frima multifunctional operating segment grew considerably faster than the group as a whole, with an increase in sales of 14%.
Its flagship VarioCookingCenter is now being distributed exclusively under the Rational brand through Rational sales companies from this year, with the company citing an “expanding group of enthusiastic customers” in Europe especially.
In line with the positive revenue performance, Rational forecasts earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) of around €205m ($232m) for 2018, up 9% year-on-year, which equates to an expected EBIT margin of 26.4%.
Rational’s investments in its workforce and in various strategic programmes to ensure the future-oriented development of business processes continued in the past fiscal year. It created more than 220 new jobs created worldwide, with around half of them in Germany.
Rational was floated in the Prime Standard of the German stock market in 2000 and is currently represented in the SDAX.