Strategic goals by 2025
The orientation is associated with ambitious strategic goals that TAKKT is aiming to achieve by 2025. As part of a comprehensive approach, these goals include financial aspects such as a significant increase in sales, earnings and free cash flow as well as moves to address the concerns of key stakeholders by improving customer satisfaction and employee motivation and conserving natural resources. The strategy is based on the three pillars Growth, OneTAKKT and Caring. The table below gives an overview of TAKKT’s strategic goals.
|Strategic goals by 2025|
TAKKT is aiming to use its strategic orientation and clear customer focus to increase its business volume to EUR 2 billion by 2025. A slightly larger portion of the additional sales are expected to come from organic growth and a somewhat smaller share from value-creating acquisitions.
TAKKT is aiming to achieve a marked increase in the Group’s sales over the coming years and to increase its organic growth rate to ten percent annually on average. In the years prior to the coronavirus pandemic, the Group averaged organic growth in the low to mid single-digit range. TAKKT is convinced that the new orientation and strategy will allow it to achieve much higher growth rates in the future. The products that the divisions offer allow them to address a very large and fragmented market in which even leading brands like KAISER+KRAFT have a market share that is only in the very low single-digit percentage range, meaning they offer a lot of potential for growth.
Stronger e-commerce growth in particular is expected to contribute to realizing this potential. The further development of TAKKT’s business model has already been connected with a steady increase in the e-commerce business in recent years, which by now accounts for well over half of the business volume. TAKKT expects the changes in customer behavior and the increasing shift towards e-commerce in the B2B sector to accelerate further. The Group wants to achieve above-average organic growth in e-commerce in the future as well.
Relevant e-commerce functions will be coordinated Group-wide and managed within the divisions to achieve this. As a first step, in 2022 TAKKT developed a uniform approach for key figures and performance measurement in e-commerce, which will be used throughout the entire Group in the future. In 2023, the focus in the three divisions will be on further optimization of e-commerce marketing with the technologies currently in use, such as through increased performance marketing and a wider presence on other platforms. In the medium term, TAKKT wants to realize further efficiency gains through greater standardization of the web shops and shared use of IT infrastructure.
On the division level, the different sales brands will cooperate more closely in marketing, sales and category management to offer their customers a wide product range of various product groups. This way, for example, a logistics buyer will be able to procure products for the storage and transport of their goods as well as packaging from a single source. With this increase in cross-selling, TAKKT expects to generate higher business volume with its existing customer base and therefore positive contributions to growth.
In the Industrial & Packaging division, the connection between the two largest sales brands, KAISER+KRAFT and ratioform, was highlighted in 2022 through a clear co-branding. In the course of 2023, a relaunch with a merger of the two brands is planned. At the end of 2022, the FoodService division decided that Hubert and Central would remain independent brands. However, the key product range of each respective partner brand will also be sold to the other’s own customer base through cross-selling. In addition to increasing e-commerce and expanding cross-selling, the Group believes that sustainable products and business models offer considerable growth potential.
TAKKT also sees a major opportunity for additional growth through an improved and intelligent pricing strategy. Currently, pricing is based primarily on purchase prices and margin requirements. In the future, the determination of sales prices will be faster as well as partially automated. The aim is to expand the corresponding functions, to define prices that are geared more towards customer and competitive data, and to use algorithms for flexible and customer-specific pricing. In 2023, this will first be implemented at I&P, followed by a roll-out of the new approach in the other divisions. In the medium term, TAKKT expects the new strategy to be a driver of additional growth through more competitive pricing of some products. At the same time, taking advantage of a higher willingness to pay with less price-elastic product groups will have a positive effect on the gross profit margin.
Greater strength through acquisitions
In addition to organic growth, TAKKT also wants to continue to grow through acquisitions. For this, suitable companies are sought whose products and solutions strengthen and complement the existing activities. With a view to strengthening existing businesses, TAKKT makes sure that an acquisition target has an attractive customer base. Another aim is to enhance the added value within the Group through future acquisitions.
TAKKT also wants to acquire companies offering products or services that expand the existing range of services for customers. These could be, for example, solutions for manufacturing, refining or adapting products as well as service offerings. On the regional level, TAKKT’s focus is on the European and North American markets, where the Group is already active. The approach to acquisitions remains opportunistic.
With regard to acquisitions, TAKKT’s aim is to achieve a strong integration of the target company. This allows the acquired companies to benefit from the competencies and expertise at the divisional and Group level (e.g., in logistics, IT, data & analytics, category management and marketing). In addition to taking advantage of synergies, growth will be accelerated through improved scalability. Both result in a higher increase in value as opposed to the acquired company continuing to operate independently. TAKKT is also interested in investing in companies with a strong sustainability focus such as start-ups with circular business models.
One key component of the new strategic orientation is a more compact and integrated corporate structure. TAKKT expects the new structure to bolster growth as well as improve profitability through scaling effects and more efficient use of resources. Starting from an EBITDA margin of around ten percent last year, the Group aims to increase its profitability by two percentage points and lift its EBITDA to EUR 240 million by 2025. Further information on the current progress regarding the development of the Group functions IT and logistics can be found in the section “Organization and business areas” starting on page 30.
Improvement of profitability, earnings and free TAKKT cash flow
TAKKT achieves high levels of profitability by positioning itself as a B2B distance seller in attractive niche markets and using efficient processes. The starting point is a gross profit margin, which should exceed the Group average by over 40 percent. The relatively high margin results from the market position as a provider of business equipment as well as from targeted long-term measures such as the expansion of private labels and increasing the share of direct imports from Asia and Eastern Europe. Even in the current inflationary environment, TAKKT is adhering to its target for the gross profit margin and will continue to pass on price increases to customers in full.
TAKKT’s aim is to increase absolute EBITDA significantly to EUR 240 million by 2025. The Group also wants to increase the EBITDA margin by two percentage points from the current level of around ten percent. Two main effects will contribute to this. First of all, organic growth and better infrastructure utilization should reduce the cost ratios for marketing, HR and other expenses. Second, TAKKT expects to see considerable scaling effects and efficiency gains from the stronger integration of Group functions, as well as from moves to expand cooperation between the various brands within a division.
TAKKT’s business model is not only characterized by above-average profitability, but also enables the company to generate high free cash flows. In addition to sales and earnings growth, the change in net working capital is another decisive factor in free cash flow development. The Group will be paying even more attention to allocating capital as efficiently as possible. The objective is to achieve a long-term increase in the TAKKT cash flow to EUR 150 million by 2025.
An important part of the strategy is the repositioning of activities whose market environment has undergone long-term changes as a result of the pandemic. The activities of Displays2go and Hubert were particularly affected. At Displays2go, the repositioning resulted in expansion of the product portfolio with a focus on digital displays. This product area already saw very high growth rates in 2022. Unlike analog banners, which are usually more event-driven, digital displays are often in constant use and permanently installed. In the FoodService division, the decision was made at the end of 2022 to integrate the market-related functions in the US. This will enable Hubert to offer its customers kitchen equipment such as refrigerators and ovens in addition to merchandising solutions, as well as provide expert advice on these products.
The new strategy is not limited to improving the company’s commercial success but instead pursues a comprehensive approach. TAKKT is convinced that addressing the concerns of all important stakeholder groups is the prerequisite for sustainable commercial success. This is why the Group has set itself ambitious goals for 2025 relating to customer satisfaction, employee engagement, and the environment and climate.
Increasing customer satisfaction
By focusing more strongly on the customer, TAKKT wants to improve their shopping experience and satisfaction. This can be measured with the customer NPS (cNPS), which shows a customer’s willingness to recommend and is monitored continuously. TAKKT’s goal is to achieve a cNPS of 60 points. With this in mind, the business units are focusing on the expectations and needs of customers along the entire value chain for an improved shopping experience. This includes strengthening the expertise in providing advice and problem-solving in customer service, continuously developing the product range with new, innovative products, and ensuring even faster and more reliable delivery to customers. The more integrated structure will also allow customers to benefit from standardized processes for order entry, processing and delivery, and consequently from higher process quality.
Dedicated and motivated employees
Dedicated employees are the key element for excellent performance and the best customer service. The Group wants to further strengthen employees’ identification with the company and its attractiveness as an employer. While the cNPS indicates a customer’s willingness to recommend, the employee NPS (eNPS) provides information about the attractiveness of the employer and the willingness of employees to recommend it to others. This value is measured on a regular basis. TAKKT’s goal is to achieve an eNPS of 50 points in the long term. In order to realize this, the business units are working on specific measures to boost employee commitment and identification with the company.
In 2022, a Group-wide employer branding project was launched, which will emphasize the affiliation of the individual companies to the TAKKT Group and the associated benefits more strongly, and in turn support the recruitment and retention of employees. In addition, TAKKT is continuously working on improving development opportunities and communication within the company. Further information on calculation of the cNPS and eNPS can be found in the “Management system” section starting on page 41.
TAKKT believes firmly in the benefits of having diverse teams at all hierarchical levels. Diversity hereby refers to attributes such as cultures, nationalities, ethnic and social backgrounds, age, sexual orientation and also genders. The Group has set itself the goal of significantly increasing the share of women in executive positions to 45 percent by 2025.
Preserving natural resources and combating climate change
TAKKT is convinced that sustainability represents competitive advantages across all stages of the value chain and enhances company value for the long term. As a result, the Group aims to differentiate itself even more from other market players in this area. Besides taking sustainability aspects into even greater account with regard to the company’s own processes and supply chain, the main focus is on the products. In addition, TAKKT intends to review the feasibility of business models that do justice to the idea of the circular economy.
The increasing demand for sustainable product ranges makes them an important growth driver. At the beginning of 2022, TAKKT introduced its own product classification system to help measure the sustainability of its products and make this information visible, namely a rating system using criteria that determines whether products add value for the generations to come. In the past year, the share of these “enkelfähig” products was at 20 percent. By 2025, TAKKT wants to contribute to resource-efficient management and increase the share of products that will add value for future generations to 40 percent.
Moreover, TAKKT is committed to combating climate change. By 2025, direct and indirect CO2 equivalent (CO2e) emissions that result, for example, from the use of electricity, heat and steam (Scope 1 and Scope 2 according to the GHG Protocol) will be reduced by 20 percent compared to the base year 2021. In the following step, TAKKT wants to reduce emissions by 50 percent by 2030. As the company is not highly energy intensive, TAKKT’s activities offer limited opportunities for direct savings. Most of the reduction is expected to come from insetting, which would entail the Group building and operating photovoltaic systems and then using the electricity generated or feeding it back into the grid.
The original goal of fully offsetting the remaining Scope 1 and 2 emissions is no longer being pursued. This decision is based on the increasingly critical assessment of compensation mechanisms and the belief that reducing emissions is the key for effective climate protection.
Further details on sustainability goals and measures are presented in the new sustainability report.