Since being spun off from Linde AG in December 2006, the KION Group has successfully initiated and implemented various restructuring programmes. Besides leading to considerable efficiency improvements, they have enabled us to leverage synergies throughout the Group and adapt to changing market conditions.
As a consequence of the financial and economic crisis that began in late 2008, the KIARA restructuring programme was launched in the second quarter of 2009 to make the KION Group less dependent on the business cycle. As a first step, rapid action was taken to reduced fixed costs.
The KIARA performance enhancement programme was terminated at the end of 2011 as most of the measures had already been implemented by that time. KIARA's main elements were the successful implementation of long-term structural improvements and efficiency increases. The planned savings were achieved as a result of regular and detailed reporting and ongoing evaluation of KPIs by the relevant managers in the KION Group and its brand companies. At the same time, the impact of the short-term measures tapered off much faster than had been estimated in the KIARA business case owing to the unexpectedly strong recovery in 2011.
Nonetheless, the KION Group will continue to implement long-term structural and efficiency measures. Structural changes will include the further consolidation of our European production sites by closing the plants in Bari (Italy) and Montataire (France). The production capacity of these plants will be shifted to other production facilities with the aim of improving the capacity utilisation of the European plants.