Growth is expected to continue into the present year, showing the industry’s ability to expand to global markets. This is the scenario painted by Giampaolo Vitali, author of the Ipack-Ima Observatory report presented this morning during the opening ceremony.
The survey was led by professor Giampaolo Vitali – secretary of the Association of Business Economists and professor at the University of Turin – and involved 236 companies employing a total of 14,500 people with an overall turnover of nearly € 4 billion. The results show that the second semester of 2011 closed with one-third of sample companies (exactly 34%) estimating an increased turnover, while 40% of interviewees reported stable performance and only 16% a drop in business. In addition, one-fourth of sample companies (26%) experienced an increase in export sales, while 64% were in line with the previous year and only 10% lamented a decrease. This encouraging scenario is backed by stable employment rates, as reported by 85% of companies. Considering the individual business communities active in the industry, turnover in the second semester of 2011 rose mainly in the Beverage area (41% of companies reporting positive performance and another 45% stable on last year’s figures), while exports grew chiefly in the Fruit & Vegetables, Beverage and GBF areas.
With regard to growth expectations in the first semester of the present year, the overall picture allows for a good degree of optimism specially if compared to the general economic state of the market. The majority of companies predict stable performance (51%), while those who expect an increase in turnover (28% of the total) outnumber those who predict a drop (21%). The export business seems to raise hopes even higher: as many as 25% of companies expect a rise in foreign demand and only 11% are preparing to face hard times. The same goes for employment rates, with 9% of optimists and 7% of worriers.
Positive growth expectations are widespread across both manufacturing areas (machinery and materials), with slightly more positive forecasts in the machinery sector as to foreign demand compared to companies producing materials (28% of machinery companies predict an upturn compared to 19% of material manufacturers). As for what concerns the single business communities, Chemicals Industrial & Home and Hygiene & Beauty are the ones that claim to be more concerned in terms of turnover performance, while Meat and Fruit & Vegetables show greater optimism.
As regards employment rates, even though over 80% of companies across all business communities expect the number of employees to remain unvaried throughout the first semester 2012, some areas including Beverage, Chemicals Industrial & Home, Meat and Vegetables show a negative balance between hirings and dismissals.
The entire industry of manufacturing materials, machinery and technology will be under the spotlight at IPACK-IMA, a not-to-miss chance to keep in step with the latest market news. With over 1,400 exhibitors (29% of which from outside of Italy), the event is a comprehensive showcase offering top-of-the-range technological solutions to both food and non-food industries. IPACK-IMA’s specific competences developed over many years will greatly benefit the business communities involved in the exhibition’s nine major markets: Grain Based Food, Dairy Products, Beverage, Confectionery, Vegetables & Fruit, Fresh and Convenience Food, Health and Personal Care, Chemicals - industrial & home, Industrial & Durable Goods.