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Jörg Bollow - 21 Feb 2014
“2013 – the year when Bisnode went through a major restructuring to align our offering to changing market needs, and to increase efficiency. All aiming to create a platform for future growth”.
2013 was the year when all operations in all 19 markets united under a single brand, Bisnode. In conjunction with this significant integration project, we also set a new ambitious vision to enable our customers to make smart decision through better decision support.
Bisnode believes in the value of local presence. The all-encompassing restructuring has given us a more agile and streamlined organisation model that will enable each market to operate closer to customer and local conditions. Each and every one of us is surrounded by an overflow of data and information. I firmly believe that Bisnode is well positioned to bring structure to relevant data and enable us to provide our customers with insightful and relevant information. We are convinced that our customers, both existing and new, will see the value of working with us as the preferred strategic partner for decision support solutions.
The integration program has been a true team effort. I am grateful to all of my talented colleagues that have contributed their competence, insight and passion throughout this year of vast changes.We have defended our sales (organic revenue growth approaching 0 percent) while improving our efficiency – as demonstrated by an adjusted EBITA* that has improved by SEK 15 million compared to 2012. The fourth quarter results with a strong EBITA profit margin showed that we have made the right decisions and changes.
The Nordic Region is our largest market. The entire region, and specifically the Swedish operations, have undergone the largest changes in the Group. Several individual companies have been merged into one brand with three distinct business areas – and business support functional competencies have been allocated into an efficient cross-functional organisation. Although organic growth for the full year was negative, the region has managed to catch up and the gap to 2012 narrowed over the year to approach zero in the last quarter.
The DACH Region, and especially Germany, has during the last two years implemented a major integration programme. We exit the year with a streamlined organisation, an updated go-to-market strategy, new facilities and to large extent a new management onboard. The internal changes in conjunction with our solid and long-term cooperation with Dun & Bradstreet will provide a good platform for new offerings and steady profits.
The Central European Region has continued its business development programme with a focus on growth. All operations now operate under the Bisnode brand name, and the region continues to deliver strong growth and profitability simultaneously.
The BeNeFra region continues to face macroeconomic challenges. In our continuous efforts to constantly adapt, we launched an improvement programme in the region during the past year. With a new Country Manager in France, a more comprehensive programme to improve profitability is already in place.
Bisnode is ready to meet the future with a clear and ambitious visionary objective and a streamlined operating model. We can be certain that changes in market demands and the legislative environment will bring challenges as well as new opportunities to our industry in the future. I stand firm in my belief that in the past year we have proven that we have built an agile organisation that can adapt to – and leverage – such changes to our advantage.We are now focusing on adding customer value by offering improved decision support.