Waiblingen, Germany – The STIHL Group finished the challenging fiscal year 2022 with record-breaking revenue of 5.5 billion euros, equating to growth of 8.6 percent compared to the previous year. As an international business, the company generated 90 percent of its revenue outside its domestic market of Germany. The rise was attributable in particular to currency effects, inflation-related price adjustments, and stronger demand for higher-price professional products. Excluding currency effects, revenue would have grown by 3.1 percent. As of Dec. 31, 2022, the STIHL Group employed 20,552 people, an increase of 2.3 percent year on year. Michael Traub, Chairman of the Executive Board of STIHL, says: “Our sales remained high in the fiscal year 2022. However, we recorded a slight decline in demand compared to the high-growth in previous years. That’s because 2022 was heavily influenced by economic and geopolitical challenges, such as disrupted supply chains, material shortages, war in Ukraine, the energy crisis, and inflation — something we also felt in terms of business performance.” Sales growth was slowed by a variety of factors, including weak economic performance in U.S. and western European core markets, declining purchasing power, and a more marked shift in consumer spending to other areas of life (such as travelling and eating out) as a result of eased Covid restrictions. Although the trend toward battery-operated products remained intact, the STIHL Group saw a slight decline in the gasoline-powered segment. Traub: “The shift from gasoline to battery power is in full swing. STIHL is actively shaping this transformation by focusing on dual technological leadership. We are consistently and systematically making massive investments in battery technology while continuing to fully support the sustainable and environmentally friendly advancement of our gasoline-powered products.”
Today the STIHL product range includes more than 80 battery-operated tools for private consumers and professionals, which account for 20 percent of the STIHL tools sold worldwide. By 2027, STIHL plans to increase this share to at least 35 percent, with a goal of 80 percent for 2035.
Aside from battery technology, STIHL is also investing in the advancement of combustion engines, particularly in terms of their sustainability. To do so, STIHL is focusing on biofuels and e-fuels. With MotoMix Eco, which the company developed in-house, STIHL has already launched a fuel containing 10 percent renewable raw materials, such as wood scraps from forestry and non-edible parts of plants. Compared with STIHL MotoMix, a conventional specialty fuel for two-stroke engines, MotoMix Eco helps reduce carbon emissions by at least 8 percent. Now STIHL is taking things a step further with e-fuels, synthetic fuels produced from green hydrogen and CO2 using wind energy that are virtually carbon-neutral. STIHL products are already e-fuel ready today: the reduction in carbon emissions from the use of products with a combustion engine has an immediate effect, without customers having to invest in new products. STIHL plans to achieve the widespread use of e-fuels in its tools starting in 2027.
Dr. Stefan Caspari