HUBER+SUHNER: weak North American market and high customer inventories lead to lower business volume after nine months

Ad Hoc announcement pursuant to Art. 53 LR
24.10.2023 - 6:45 (CET)

Industry segment maintains turnover – Communication segment reports significant decline – Transportation segment remains on a dynamic growth path – strategic growth initiatives continue to make a positive contribution overall – first signs of recovery in individual submarkets

Order intake and net sales after nine months

In CHF million20232022Change in %
Order intake Group
Industry segment 


Communication segment 



Transportation segment 


Net sales Group 

Industry segment



Communication segment 



Transportation segment 



As expected, the first nine months of the reporting year were characterised by lower order intake in two of the three market segments. While high inventory levels at industrial and communications customers continued to delay the awarding of new orders, the weak North American market due to declining 5G rollouts was another reason for the decline in volume in the Communication segment. In the Transportation segment, however, the very good development compared to the same period of the previous year was confirmed. The five strategic growth initiatives also made a positive contribution overall.

The order intake of CHF 639.2 million after nine months was 15.6 % below the prior-year value, while net sales of CHF 666.3 million were 9.1 % lower. Adjusted for currency, copper price and portfolio effects, the decline in sales compared to the same period last year was 4.1 %.

Industry segment maintains turnover

In the Industry segment, the strong increase in order intake in the aerospace and defense growth initiative could not compensate for the currently lower demand in the other subsegments. While deliveries of high-power charging systems for electric vehicles in the first nine months even slightly exceeded the high level of the previous-year period, regulatory uncertainties in the US market led to a temporary delay in the placement of new orders. The numerous project tenders in all submarkets of the Industry segment, despite the still high inventories at customers, point to structurally healthy markets.

Communication segment with expected decrease as a result of declining 5G rollouts

The general decline in investments by communications customers was felt in large parts of the market. In the Communication market segment, the sharp decline in order intake and net sales compared to the same period of the previous year was mainly due to the already sharply declining volumes from the roll-out of mobile networks to the 5G standard in North America throughout the year and additionally full warehouses at customers. The development of demand for such products from the Asian market was positive, albeit to a lesser extent. New major impulses in the Communication segment are expected in the near future, for example from data center customers. HUBER+SUHNER has promising technologies for the necessary expansion of computing power in connection with artificial intelligence (AI) applications, which is gaining momentum.

Transportation segment remains on a dynamic growth path

In the Transportation market segment, both order intake and net sales continued to grow substantially compared to the same period last year. The automotive subsegment, which has been on the road to success for some time now, received significant impetus from the two growth initiatives electric vehicles and advanced driver assistance system (ADAS). In the other subsegment, investments in rail bound transport continued their recovery after the lean period during the pandemic. Accordingly, business with railway customers continued to enjoy good, broad-based demand in the third quarter and grew in both order intake and sales.


The overall significantly weaker order intake towards the end of the first semester continued over the summer months, during which there have been increasing signs of a recovery in individual submarkets in recent weeks. In the Industry segment, the low point has probably been reached, although the current level of demand will continue for a few months until customers' inventories are completely depleted. In the Communication segment, initial indications suggest that the trough has been passed and that the order situation in the global markets could improve somewhat in the coming months. The Transportation segment continues to have good opportunities to confirm its positive development in a persistently favourable market environment.

This media release is also available in German. The German version is binding.

The definition of Alternative Performance Measures can be found under

Further Calendar dates

23 January 2024  
Net sales / Order intake (12 months)
5 March 2024 
Annual Report 2023, Media and analysts’ conference on fiscal year 2023
27 March 2024 
Annual General Meeting (Rapperswil SG)

Patrick G. Köppe
Head Corporate Communications
Tumbelenstrasse 20
8330 Pfäffikon ZH

+41 44 952 25 60