Bucher Emhart Glass reported a 2.1% increase in profit for the first half of 2015, despite difficult market conditions.

It said the market for glass-forming machines remained at the same level overall as in the same period of last year. The market for glass inspection machinery weakened after several very good years.

Existing surplus capacity at manufacturers of glass-forming machinery ramped up the competitive and margin pressure. In China the market remained at a low level.

The Cham, Switzerland-based company reported that its parts and service business benefitted worldwide from strong demand while the successful cooperation with O-I has also had a positive influence.

While the order intake in local currencies grew by more than 5%, in terms of the appreciation of the Swiss franc, it was down by about 5%. The same applied to sales, which showed a currency effect of about 9%.

Nevertheless, the division succeeded in improving the operating profit margin by 2.1% to 6.1%. This was the first sign of positive results after several years of effort in the framework of its strategic realignment.

The company anticipates a modest increase in sales in local currencies for the remainder of 2015, along with an improvement in the operating profit margin as the restructuring measures begin to bear fruit.