Continental Tobacco Corp., the owner of the more than 130-year-old tobacco factory in Sátoraljaújhely, has closed another successful year. The company’s net sales reached HUF 77 billion in 2023, and its profit after tax was close to HUF 9.7 billion – an increase of nearly 21 percent and 17.5 percent respectively compared to the previous year. The engine of growth was the new tobacco prefabrication plant section, which was inaugurated in 2022 and enabled a significant increase in tobacco cut production, while the results of the two-thirds export expansion plants also benefited.

Financial results

Based on the 2023 annual reports of Continental Tobacco, one of the leading players in the Hungarian tobacco industry, the company’s net sales and profit after tax also increased significantly, from HUF 63.7 billion in 2022 to HUF 77 billion, and from HUF 8.2 billion last year to HUF 9.7 billion. The increase for the former is around 21 percent, for the latter 17.5 percent.

The positive tendency is mainly due to the effective integration of the new tobacco prefabrication plant, which was handed over at the end of 2022, into production, allowing for a 50 percent higher production of tobacco cuttings than before. The increased production capacity was also reflected in the results of the two expansion plants operating as separate economic entities, which play an important role in export sales in particular, thus increasing the export revenue of Hungarian tobacco companies.

In sync with the growing financial results, the company’s statistical headcount has also increased: while Continental Tobacco Corp. employs 555 people, the two expansion plants employ an additional 50.

A year full of miles

In 2023, the company has laid the foundations for the necessary infrastructure improvements by purchasing land, in addition to the successful integration of the factory hall and the tobacco prefabrication line, which were delivered at the end of 2022.

Being one of the largest employers in Sátoraljaújhely, the company also focused on employee support and the development of their wage and benefit system.

Cornerstones of 2024

The year 2024 is all about laying the foundations for further development and growth at the group: Continental has embarked on a HUF 16.5 billion investment programme, including the construction of three halls, machinery purchases and energy modernisation, which was marked by the laying of the foundation stone of the first greenfield warehouse building as part of the package.  This building is expected to be completed as early as 2024, with a target completion date of mid-2026. The improvements, which will add a total of around 19,000 square metres to Continental’s production, warehouse and office space, will enable the company to install additional machinery, increase production capacity and modernise warehousing processes, thus improving sustainability and competitiveness

Csaba Füzi, CEO of Continental Tobacco Corp., said that while 2023 was mainly about channelling the developments of the previous years, in 2024, with the start of the implementation of Continental’s new investment package, the focus will be on laying the foundations for further growth of the company. The company’s goal is to look to the future with the flexibility to anticipate industry changes, stabilising the next decades of the 133-year-old historic factory, even another 133 years. This is important for the city, the region and the collective, but it can also be the basis for preserving the domestic tobacco industry.