OBERKOCHEN, Germany—Despite challenging market conditions, the Zeiss Group continued to make significant gains in the first half of fiscal year 2021/22 ending March 31, 2022. Revenue increased by 20 percent to €4.1 billion versus €3.4 billion in the prior year. At €736 million, earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) were also significantly higher than the €591 million in the prior-year period. The EBIT margin is 18 percent. The high level of incoming orders also continued in the first half of the new fiscal year, with incoming orders increasing to €5.49 billion versus €4.20 billion in year-ago period.

"We have had a good start to the fiscal year with revenue in the first half of the year once again exceeding the very good level from last year. All four Zeiss segments have contributed to this considerable growth dynamic despite challenging conditions," said Dr. Karl Lamprecht, president & CEO of Zeiss. "We have a global setup, a broad portfolio and have even increased our expenditure on research and development. We are reaping the benefits of this at the moment and this is reflected in our half-year figures, our growth and our capacity for innovation."

Zeiss said the geopolitical and overall economic conditions, in particular the war in Ukraine, as well as the effects of the corona pandemic—currently in China—and the resulting disruptions to supply chains have strongly impacted the individual strategic business units to differing degrees. Yet all four of Zeiss’s business segments—Semiconductor Manufacturing Technology, Industrial Quality & Research, Medical Technology and Consumer Market, experienced growth.

The Medical Technology unit generated €1,057 million in revenue, up 15 percent from year ago (11 percent with currency effect), surpassing the level it had been at before the COVID-19 pandemic, Zeiss said. Incoming orders remain at a high level with an increase in orders received. Revenue saw double-digit percentage growth despite ongoing bottlenecks in the supply chains and procurement of materials. The two strategic business units, Microsurgery and Ophthalmic Devices, contributed to this growth. All regions recorded positive developments, and the APAC region made the largest contribution to this growth.

The Consumer Markets segment generated €770 million in revenue during the first half, up 13 percent over year-ago (9 percent with currency effect).

Zeiss attributed the increase primarily to innovations, digital products and services in all regions in the field of eyecare, and the improved business with nature and sports optics and Zeiss cine lenses.

Zeiss noted that all regions contributed to the continued strong growth trajectory. The APAC region got off to an excellent start in the new fiscal year. Higher rates of growth were also achieved in the EMEA and Americas regions as compared with the prior-year period. In the Americas region, this was due in part to the strong performance in the U.S., Zeiss said.

"The positive development of all our financial KPIs confirms we had a good start to fiscal year 2021/22. This is also evident in the considerable expenditure on research and development, which totaled over half a billion euros in these six months alone," said Dr. Christian Müller, CFO of Carl Zeiss AG. "What's more, we are also planning on continuing the ZEISS Group's growth trajectory with substantial investments in digitalization, and on moving forward with increasing our capacities. This includes the targeted expansion of infrastructure and recruiting more staff. In 2022 alone, 500 new employees have already been hired at the Semiconductor Manufacturing Technology segment at our site in Oberkochen, Germany, and more will follow."