The medical and safety technology group Drägerwerk is increasingly feeling the effects of the sanctions due to the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine. “We have already survived many crises together with the employees in Russia, but this one is even deeper,” said company boss Stefan Dräger today to the financial news agency dpa-AFX.

Business in Russia has more than halved in the past year. The business with safety technology is even more difficult than that with medical technology.

business ceased

The company produces gas warning devices that are intended for the Russian nickel producer Nornickel, but can be assigned to Gazprom by order of the authorities. The gas company is on the sanctions list. In order not to take the risk of violating the sanctions, for example, Dräger had to completely stop the safety technology business with the country and lay off the employees in the area.

But business with medical technology in Russia is also very difficult due to ever new sanctions, said Dräger. It is very time-consuming to check whether an oligarch who is on the sanctions list is still involved in a hospital. There were also problems in the supply chain.

“We strictly adhere to the export regulations,” he emphasized. Before the war, Drägerwerk was the market leader for medical products in Russia. Last year, the market share fell by half. US competitor General Electric was able to keep its stake, the Chinese company Mindray more than doubled its stake.

Another problematic business partner

Business in China is becoming increasingly difficult. According to the company, the market is the third largest for Drägerwerk, and even the largest for some applications. “The Chinese government has long viewed medical technology as a strategic market,” said Dräger. There are increasing restrictions on foreign companies. “I fear that it will be difficult for medical technology in the medium term.”

Overall, Drägerwerk has been struggling with higher costs for a long time. Other companies are also suffering as a result of higher inflation and tight supply chains. In 2022, Drägerwerk slipped into the red. The loss was 63.6 million euros, as the SDax company announced. In the same period of the previous year, a profit of 154.3 million euros was reported.