Pipe systems group Georg Fischer AG cut 700 European jobs last year as the company battled depressed demand in the region.
Global headcount went down to 13,400 from 13,700 because the company increased workforces in Asia and the United States, which it says compensated for the cuts in Europe.
For the 2012-13 financial year, which ended in April, sales stayed relatively flat compared to last year, totaling CHF 1.8 billion Swiss francs (1.4 billion euros). However, several plants were operating on low utilization times as part of plans to reduce costs.
Net profit increased slightly to 83 million francs from 81 million francs.
The piping division — GF Piping Systems — increased sales 3 percent and kept operating profit steady. However, GF Automotive saw sales fall, again because of challenging market conditions in Europe, and car and truck production went down 10 percent.
Georg Fischer is based in Schaffhausen, Switzerland.