In no other decade did Sika set up new companies in more countries: between 1990 and 1995 alone, 16 new subsidiaries were founded. Especially in Asia, Eastern Europe and in Latin America, Sika strengthened its presence. Despite this effort, the 1990s were not an easy decade. Sika combatted recessionary phases as well as weak profitability, attributed to tight competition and increasing raw materials prices.
The solution was achieved by withdrawing from less lucrative, non-core businesses, such as the building of robots used to rehabilitate sewer lines. Sika also abandoned the manufacture of road building products. And Sika almost sold its sealing membranes business to Sarna.
Decade of rapid growth
The very same Sarna became a member of the Sika Group ten years later. In 2005 that Swiss company, a specialist in membranes, became a Sika acquisition. Sika experienced its decade of most rapid growth. Turnover increased from 2 billion to more than 4.6 billion francs, a significant portion of which was contributed by the 36 firms acquired between 2000 and 2008. During that same period, the workforce increased from 8,000 to 13,000.
From basement to roof
Since the year 2000, Sika summarizes its core competencies as follows: sealing, bonding, damping, reinforcing and protecting. From basement to roof, Sika intended to become the market leader in these technological disciplines. Sika ViscoCrete, the concrete admixture brought to market in 2000, became a significant sales mainstay.
Sika also experienced a boom in other business units — in the peak year of 2006, turnover increased by over one third. Sika AG, the holding company since 2002, invested considerably in personnel and production capacities, and restructured the overall management organization.
Increasing market share
Since 2006, all marketing and sales activities have been consistently channeled via new centralized Business Units, targeted at the four most important customer groups, “Distribution”, “Contractors”, “Concrete” and “Industry”. Towards the end of the decade, the tug of the international recessionary maelstrom triggered by the financial crisis was also felt at Sika. Despite the recession, Sika has nonetheless been increasing its market share virtually everywhere. On the threshold of its 100-year anniversary in 2010, Sika stands well equipped to face the future.