Carlsbad, CA 92010
Phone: (760) 930-1600
Fax: (760) 930-1603
Sales: $65 million in inkjet inks; $1.4 billion overall.
Key Personnel: Paul Manning, chairman, president and CEO; John Hammond, SVP, general counsel and secretary; Stephen Rolfs, SVP and CFO; John Collopy, VP and treasurer; Kimberly Morin, VP, human resources; Jeffrey Makal, VP, controller and chief accounting officer; John Manning, VP and assistant general counsel; Michael Geraghty, Color Group president.
Major Products: Water-based pigmented and dye-based inkjet inks for desktop printers; water-based, pigmented and dye-based and sublimation inkjet inks for wide format, textile and industrial applications.
Operating Facilities: St. Louis, MO; Morges, Switzerland.
Comments: Sensient Technologies is a global leader in inkjet and colorant technology, as well as a leading manufacturer of flavors, fragrances and colors for foods and beverages, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, home and personal care products, specialty printing and imaging products, computer imaging and industrial colors.
Sensient Technologies had a strong year in 2014, with sales remaining steady at $1.4 billion. Foreign currency translation decreased revenue 7.4%. Adjusted operating income was $210.0 million in 2015, slightly down from $221.2 million in 2014, again impacted by foreign currency translation.
The Flavors & Fragrances Group reported revenue of $819 million in 2015, down 3.8% from $851.5 million in 2014. Operating income increased approximately 1% to $121.9 million in 2015. Foreign currency translation reduced both revenue and operating income in 2015, by 6.7% and 2.9%, respectively.
The Color Group, which includes Sensient’s inkjet operations, reported revenue of $470.9 million, a decrease of 7.5% compared to $509.3 million in 2014. Operating income was $94.8 million in 2015, a decline of 16.9% compared to $114 million in 2014. Sensient noted that foreign currency translation had a significant impact on both revenue and operating income, reducing both by approximately 9% for the year.
“It was a very good year for Sensient,” said Paul Manning, the company’s president and CEO. “We are on schedule to complete our restructuring activities by the end of this year, and we expect the Inks business to make a significant recovery in 2016. It was a successful year for Sensient and our shareholders, and I am very optimistic about the future.”
In an important personnel move, Sensient Technologies announced that Paul Manning will add chairman to his duties, effective April 21, 2016. He will succeed Kenneth Manning, who has served as Sensient’s chairman since 1997 and will retire from the Board of Directors in April.
Under Kenneth Manning’s leadership, Sensient transformed from a commodity producer of food products into a technology-based developer and producer of advanced food and beverage colors and flavors, inkjet inks, pharmaceutical excipients and cosmetic ingredients. Sensient’s value has grown 240% during his tenure.
Sensient Technologies is a major player in the field of inkjet, particularly in digital industrial printing applications, and the ElvaJet sublimation ink portfolio is successful in the textile market. Dr. Christophe Bulliard, marketing director, Sensient Imaging Technologies SA, reported that the company’s inkjet operations had another strong year in 2015.
“Sensient did really well in 2015 with a good progression in North America and worldwide, this despite a tough environment in key textile markets,” said Dr. Bulliard. “We have launched new ranges of high performance sublimation inks and one of the first series of pigmented inks for cotton with excellent rub fastness.”
In an important move, Sensient acquired the assets of Xennia Technology Ltd., a UK manufacturer of digital inks. Xennia reported revenue of nearly $11 million in 2014. Xennia’s reactive, acid and sublimation inks are used for printing on textiles and other substrates.
“We have acquired Xennia Ltd., a key contributor to the development of digital printing solutions,” said Dr. Bulliard. “Through this acquisition, we have become one of the very few players to offer very high performance digital textile printing technologies for all fibers. We have also gained a deep knowledge in many other areas which will accelerate the development of many a project in industrial digital printing.”
There is clearly an evolution occurring in the printing industry, with inkjet among the areas making significant gains in markets such as textiles. Sensient Imaging Technologies is capitalizing on its strengths to make gains in these fields.
“Textile printing has found new businesses such as fast fashion, who benefit fully from the advantages of digital printing and the possibility to produce just what will be sold,” Dr. Bulliard noted. “This contributes both to reducing the waste and, above all, improving cash flow by avoiding large inventories of obsolete items. Having said that, the penetration of digital technology is today around 3% of total textile printing, which allows for large growth. Reactive and pigment are expected to fuel the growth. Besides textile, digital makes more and more inroads into decoration and packaging printing.”
Because Sensient is heavily involved in the food and beverage field, the company is well prepared when it comes to regulatory issues.
“Sensient is making the core of its business with regulated industries such as food, beverages or pharmaceuticals,” Dr. Bulliard noted. “We have a network of regulatory specialists who can certify daily that our products comply with industry, company or country specific regulations. They also help selecting the appropriate raw materials and manufacturing processes.”
Raw materials continue to be a concern for ink manufacturers. “The sourcing of good quality raw materials at reasonable price is always a challenge...for all of us,” he added.
Overall, Dr. Bulliard said that Sensient is looking forward to more growth in the coming years.
“We are very optimistic about 2016 and beyond: we expect further penetration of digital printing into our core areas of activity, beyond this we have a number of exciting projects which shall fuel or growth beyond 2016,” Dr. Bulliard concluded.