Sustainably successful since 1834
In 2022, Sulzer’s Board of Directors appointed its Chairwoman, Suzanne Thoma, as Executive President of Sulzer, in view of the constantly evolving market environment and the associated shift in demand in the energy and infrastructure sectors.
The move was intended to enable Sulzer to realize its untapped potential in the large and growing markets of energy, environment and industrial processes – particularly in the areas of resource and energy efficiency, decarbonization, water treatment, bio-based polymers and the circular economy.
Sulzer also published a standalone sustainability report in 2022, further demonstrating the company’s increasing focus on sustainability. Among the highlights from the report were a 25% reduction in CO2 equivalent emissions in 2021 and a five-fold increase in the adoption of decarbonized energy.
Sulzer acquired Nordic Water, a leading supplier of water treatment technology. Announced in January and closed on February 1, 2021, the acquisition strengthened Sulzer’s wastewater treatment offering and provided further access to the clean water market. Water is now the largest business in Sulzer’s Flow Equipment division, and its comprehensive portfolio of water treatment solutions mean that it provides for every stage of the water life cycle.
With this, Sulzer continued its industrial repositioning towards higher growth markets. Sulzer has now strong positions in sustainable ventures such as water treatment, energy efficiency, recycling, biomaterial applications, low carbon solutions and healthcare.
Sulzer successfully completed the spin-off of its Applicator Systems division, renamed medmix. As part of the Sulzer family, medmix became a global leader in high-precision delivery devices for markets ranging from healthcare to adhesives and beauty. Now independent and with a valuation close to CHF 2 billion, profit margins of 25% and over 900 active patents, medmix’s success and innovations touch billions of people’s lives.
In line with its strategy to complement the portfolio with bolt-on acquisitions in fast-growing markets such as medical and water, Sulzer acquired Haselmeier. The acquisition provided Sulzer access to the highly attractive drug delivery devices market. With its self-injection pens for reproductive health, diabetes or osteoporosis patients, Haselmeier is a great fit to Sulzer’s Applicator Systems division, leveraging its precision injection-molding expertise.
To effectively govern Sulzer’s sustainability agenda, the Board of Directors extended the scope of the Strategy Committee and renamed it to Strategy and Sustainability Committee. In addition to strategic matters, it advises the Board on the company’s sustainability initiatives and objectives.
Sulzer introduced ESG (Environment, Social, Governance) metrics into its compensation framework. ESG is included in the personal objectives of all the long-term-incentive-eligible leaders.
Sulzer partnered with H&M to control and develop Worn Again, an innovator in textile recycling technology, which aspires to enable full circularity in the garment industry.
With the acquisition of the US-headquartered GTC Technology in April 2019, Sulzer complemented its offering with proprietary processes and systems for the production of aromatics and other petrochemicals. The acquisition provided a market entry into the attractive technology licensing business and made Sulzer’s business less cyclical.
Sulzer grew its aftermarket activities in July 2019 through the acquisition of Alba Power, a leading service provider for aeroderivative gas turbines. These light and compact turbines are prevalent in the distributed power segment, a market that continues to develop as power generation becomes more decentralized. By diversifying its service offering, Sulzer continued to balance its end-market exposure away from the challenging utility power sector.
Sulzer’s efforts in sustainable packaging were recognized by Packaging Europe. In the most prestigious packaging innovation competition, Sulzer’s ecopaCC™ collapsible cartridge was awarded the Sustainability Award in the “Resource Efficiencyˮ category.
Enriching its long tradition of supporting communities, the company launched the “Sulzer Scholarship for Women in Science and Engineering”, directed at female students studying for degrees in the areas of engineering, technology and science. The scholarship ultimately aims to support and increase the participation of women in the engineering industry. Reflecting its worldwide presence and specific country requirements, Sulzer awarded scholarships in China, India, Indonesia, South Africa and Brazil.
Sulzer acquires JWC Environmental, LLC. JWC, headquartered in Santa Ana, California, is a leading provider of highly engineered, mission-critical solids reduction and removal products such as grinders, screens, and dissolved air flotation system for municipal, industrial and commercial wastewater applications. The transaction allows Sulzer to grow its wastewater treatment offering.
Sulzer inaugurates a new manufacturing site for Applicator Systems products in Wrocļaw, Poland. Strong growth in the adhesives and dental segments, for which Sulzer markets products commercially under the brand Mixpac, required additional production capacities.
The acquisition of Medmix, headquartered in Switzerland, extends the Applicator Systems division’s portfolio of mixing and dispensing devices, adding a healthcare segment to leading positions in dental, adhesives and beauty.
Sulzer acquires Brithinee Electric of Colton, California. Through this acquisition, Sulzer expands its electromechanical services business into Southern California and gains access to the Californian wind, cement and water markets with established offerings and customers.
Sulzer’s BLUE BOX™ artificial intelligence solution won the Gold Certificate Industry 4.0 at the Swiss Digital Economy Awards in the category Highest Digital Quality. BLUE BOX uses machine learning to interpret live pump operating data. Based on this data and with the know-how of Sulzer experts that comes with the solution, the system supports plant operators to optimize operation and maintenance of their pumps.
Sulzer acquires French pump manufacturer Ensival Moret that produces pumps for a broad range of industrial applications such as fertilizers, sugar, mining, and chemicals. The acquisition closes specific product gaps in its general industry pumps portfolio – such as axial flow pumps.
Sulzer creates a fourth division called Applicator Systems that serves the industrial adhesives, dental, healthcare, and beauty markets.
Through the acquisition of Geka, Sulzer doubles the size of its high-precision plastic injection molding business. The Sulzer Mixpac Systems business unit in the Chemtech division gains critical industrial mass and segment and geographical diversification, enabling the combined business to compete globally as a leading solution provider.
Sulzer acquires PC Cox, a leading manufacturer of quality manual, pneumatic, and cordless one- and two-component dispensers for industrial and construction applications. Through this acquisition, Sulzer strengthens the Sulzer Mixpac business unit of the Chemtech division — and becomes a leading manufacturer of dispensers for industrial applications.
With the acquisition of InterWeld Inc Ltd., the Chemtech division enhances the competitiveness of its tower field service activities.
Sulzer published its company history in the form of a book: “Sulzer Through the Ages” (Original title in German: Sulzer im Wandel, ISBN: 978-3-03919-319-6).
Sulzer is now active with three divisions: Pumps Equipment (pump technology and solutions), Rotating Equipment Services (service solutions for rotating equipment), and Chemtech (separation, mixing, and service solutions).
Rotating Equipment Services extends its service network with the acquisition of Grayson Armature, one of the largest independent electromechanical service providers in Houston. Moreover, Sulzer signed two agreements to form a joint venture; one in China for the service of gas turbines, and one in the Middle East for the service of all rotating equipment for oil and gas and power customers.
Chemtech strengthens its position as a technology leader in plastics manufacturing with the acquisition of aixfotec. Furthermore, the acquisition of ASCOM and ProLabNL expand the offering of the division for gas-liquid and liquid-liquid separation technologies.
Sulzer acquires the majority of Saudi Pump Factory and establishes a local production joint venture Sulzer Saudi Pump Company (“SSPC”).
Sulzer completed the sale of its Metco division to Oerlikon. The division, which was mainly active in parts of the automotive, aviation, and general industries, was divested in line with Sulzer’s strategy to focus on the three key markets oil and gas, power, and water.
Sulzer focuses its activities in the three key markets oil and gas, power, and water. The key markets strategy is supported by changes in the operational structure. Sulzer Turbo Services and the service activities of Sulzer Pumps are combined in one new division for all rotating equipment services.
With the acquisition of Tartek Oy, a specialist in manufacturing mechanical seals, Sulzer Pumps further expands its technology portfolio. Furthermore, Sulzer opens new service centers in Brazil and China.
Sulzer Metco extends its portfolio by launching a new plasma spray gun with cascading arc technology, a new diamond-like carbon coating and the new MetcoClad laser cladding systems.
Sulzer further extends its global network by opening a new pumps production plant in China, and new service centers in Sweden and Russia.
Sulzer relocates its head office in Winterthur, Switzerland, to the Wintower. The Wintower (with a size of 99.7 m) was built from 1962 to 1966 and was Sulzer's headquarters until 1999.
Acquisition of pump company Hidrotecar S.A. in Burgos, Spain. With this acquisition, Sulzer Pumps adds complimentary products to its products range and reinforces its presence in the attractive water markets in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.
Sulzer expands its global service network by opening new state-of-the-art service centers in Russia and in Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia.
Acquisition of Cardo’s Flow Business, a full-line supplier of pumps and related equipment: with this acquisition Sulzer enters the attractive water and wastewater market.
Acquisition of C.L. Engenharia in Brazil, a specialist in tower field service: with this acquisition, Sulzer enhances the competitiveness of its tower field service activities in Brazil and further expands its presence in the emerging markets.
Acquisition of Dowding & Mills, a leading service provider for generators and motors: integrated in Sulzer Turbo Services, this acquisition creates a leading independent provider of maintenance and repair services for turbomachinery, generators, and motors with a broad geographical presence.
Sulzer Metco complements its portfolio for thin-film coatings with the acquisition of Bekaert’s diamond-like carbon coatings.
Sulzer expands its presence in the emerging markets with the opening of a new, state-of-the-art production facility in China.
Sulzer celebrates its 175th anniversary with the motto "Experience Sulzer". The sites around the world organize events for employees, customers and other interested parties, emphasizing today’s products, services and solutions.
Definition of the three values of Sulzer: Customer Partnership, Operational Excellence, and Committed People. They are the principles and standards upon which Sulzer builds its future.
Sulzer Chemtech acquires several tower field service companies in Australia, Thailand, India, and Germany.
The Sustainability Summary 2008 is audited externally and receives the highest Global Reporting Initiative G3 application level A+.
Sulzer Turbo Services expands its business in South America with the acquisition of the turbomachinery service-provider Capime.
Sulzer Chemtech acquires the separation business of KnitMesh Ltd.
Sulzer initiates a health and safety awareness program to ensure adequate safety behavior on all levels. The corporation has set the long-term goal of reducing the number of occupational accidents and illnesses to zero.
Sulzer Pumps divests its Paco pumping activities to Grundfos.
The corporation acquires Mixpac, Werfo, and Mold. The companies are integrated into the new business unit Sulzer Mixpac Systems in 2007.
Sulzer Chemtech acquires Cana-Tex in Houston, Texas, USA and thus becomes a leading field-service supplier for separation columns.
Shortly before year-end, the Hexis fuel-cell activities are sold to a Swiss foundation.
Sulzer publishes its first biannual “Sustainability Summary”, which is well received among experts.
In the course of the year, Sulzer strengthens the market positions of its divisions: Sulzer Metco acquires the Ambeon division of Westaim in Canada as well as OSU Machine Construction in Germany. Sulzer Pumps takes over the Johnston, Crown, and Paco pump activities from Precision Castparts Corp. (PCC), located in Houston, Texas, USA, and in Wuxi, China.
With the sale of Sulzer Burckhardt to its management, the divestiture program that was started in 2000 is closed. Sulzer now comprises four divisions: Sulzer Pumps, Sulzer Metco, Sulzer Chemtech, and Sulzer Turbo Services.
Incentive Capital initiates a hostile takeover bid for Sulzer. In response, Sulzer advises shareholders to reject this offer and launches a defensive campaign. At the 87th Annual General Meeting, all board proposals are approved, including the Sulzer Medica spin-off, while Incentive’s proposals are clearly rejected. As a result, Incentive cancels its bid.
The Sulzer Medica spin-off is finalized on July 10, 2001.
Sulzer Textile is sold to the Promatech Group, Italy.
Sulzer Pumps takes over Ahlstrom Pumps (Finland).
In September, plans are made public that Sulzer wants to divest several divisions, and to reintegrate Sulzer Medica. However, the reintegration plan is cancelled a few weeks later; the industrial and the medical technology parts are to develop more independently.
In December, Sulzer Turbo is sold to the MAN group.