The company is also proposing to close down its die cutting sales office in Halesowen, UK, subject to consultation with the employees as required by local legislation. According to SMT, the closure is in line with its strategy to focus more towards the energy segment and applications related to energy efficiency, and exit businesses that are considered non-core.

SMT’s die cutting operation makes various cutting, creasing and special rules mainly for the packaging industry. Invoiced sales for the business concerned amounted to about SEK75 million in 2013 and the total number of employees is 57, of which 51 in China and 6 in the UK. The business reportedly operated on a low single digit EBIT margin in 2013 and the closure will have marginal impact on EBIT for SMT. Currently, the die cutting operation forms part of the strip, wire and heating technology product area at SMT.

Customer agreements

The operations will be phased out during three months and the closure of the die cutting operation is expected to be finalized during the second quarter of 2015. SMT says that it will honor current customer agreements in the best possible way and work closely with the customers to ensure the process runs as smoothly as possible.

"We see this closure as another step in the transformation of SMT into an energy focused niche actor,” said Petra Einarsson, president of SMT. “We are continuously developing our product portfolio towards even more advanced products and materials for the most demanding industries.”