Ad hoc announcement pursuant to Art. 53 LR
Phoenix Mecano posts another disproportionate increase in profitability
Ad hoc announcement pursuant to Art. 53 LR
The Group grew dynamically and significantly improved its profitability in financial year 2021. The organic growth and disproportionate increase in earnings continued in the first quarter of 2022.
Kloten/Stein am Rhein, 21 April 2022. The Phoenix Mecano Group's consolidated gross sales increased by 18.8% in financial year 2021, from EUR 687.4 million to EUR 817.0 million. In organic, local-currency terms, they were up by 17.7%.
The Group increased its operating cash flow by 37.4% to EUR 66.2 million, compared with EUR 48.2 million the previous year. Despite substantial rises in raw material prices and costly digitalisation initiatives, the operating result of EUR 43.9 million was almost double that of 2020 (EUR 22.4 million). As a result, the operating margin improved significantly from 3.3% to 5.4%.
Result of the period
Owing to the improved financial result and lower tax rate, the result of the period climbed by 239.1% from EUR 8.9 million to EUR 30.1 million. The net margin rose from 1.3% to 3.7%.
Equity ratio and net indebtedness
Thanks to the positive trend in earnings, the equity ratio increased from 35.3% to 39.6%, only slightly below the target minimum equity ratio of 40%. Net indebtedness at the end of 2021 was EUR 80.6 million (previous year: EUR 115.4 million). The main reason for the reduction was the increased cash flow from operating activities as a result of the increase in operating cash flow. Furthermore, there was only a limited outflow of funds for acquisitions (EUR 1.0 million compared with EUR 21.2 million).
The DewertOkin Technology Group division increased its gross sales by 22.7% to EUR 392.8 million and consolidated its market leadership position. Organic, local-currency sales were up by 20.2%. Despite the increase in sales, the operating result fell from EUR 7.2 million to EUR 2.1 million. Huge material price hikes for steel, copper, aluminium and electronic components as well as significantly more expensive transport capacity led to a decline in the gross margin. The division found alternative procurement sources, stepped up insourcing and raised sales prices. However, the impact of these countermeasures took some time to feed through. The intensive further development of drive systems through the integration of sensor modules, as well as digitalisation initiatives in the smart home and hospital environments, weighed on the division's results.
Gross sales in the Industrial Components division rose by 15.2% to EUR 226.4 million. In organic, local-currency terms, they were up by 14.2%. The division significantly increased its operating result, from EUR -0.5 million to EUR 17.7 million. The jump in earnings was due on the one hand to volume growth and on the other hand to the structural adaptations linked to the performance enhancement programme in 2019/2020. The operating margin was 7.8%, well up on the previous year's -0.3%.
The Enclosure Systems division increased its gross sales by 15.9% to EUR 197.8 million. In organic, local-currency terms, they were up by 17.1%. Driven by the strong increase in sales and a positive operating leverage effect, the operating result jumped by 56.4% to EUR 26.7 million. However, there was also a disproportionate increase in operating supplies and freight outward. The operating margin was 13.5%, well up on the previous year's 10.0%.
First quarter of 2022
The high demand continued to grow in the first quarter of 2022, driving orders on hand to record levels. All market regions and divisions contributed to the broad-based growth. The war in Ukraine and further lockdowns in China exacerbated supply chain issues for suppliers, customers and some Group sites.
The Phoenix Mecano Group's gross sales in Q1 2022 rose by 9.5% year-on-year, from EUR 191.8 million to EUR 210.0 million. In organic, local-currency terms, the increase was 5.0%.
Incoming orders climbed by 8.8%, from EUR 211.8 million to EUR 230.4 million. In organic, local-currency terms, they were up by 4.1%. The book-to-bill ratio has been high since the end of 2020 and stood at 109.7% in Q1 2022, suggesting that the positive sales trend will continue. The operating result grew by a disproportionately high 24.4% to EUR 13.1 million. The operating margin was 6.2% (previous year: 5.5%). The result of the period was up by 53.4% year-on-year, at EUR 10.3 million.
Gross sales in the DewertOkin Technology Group (DOT Group) division totalled EUR 91.6 million, an increase of 4.7% compared with the same period last year (-2.0% in organic, local-currency terms). The operating result was EUR 0.8 million, up from EUR 0.0 million the previous year, while the operating margin stood at 0.9%.
After the Chinese New Year holidays, the DOT Group had to scale back its production capacities in the greater Shanghai area to combat the Omicron variant. Although purchase prices for key raw materials remained high, the Group expects an improvement in the earnings situation during the course of the year.
The Industrial Components division increased its gross sales in Q1 2022 by 12.2% to EUR 62.5 million, or by 7.9% in organic, local-currency terms. As a result of the high capacity utilisation, the division's operating result improved from EUR 3.9 million to EUR 4.9 million. The operating margin climbed to 7.9%.
In some of the division's business areas, orders on hand reached record levels in the first quarter. Sustained price increases in the supply chain made further sales price increases necessary.
In the Enclosure Systems division, gross sales in Q1 2022 rose by 15.1% (13.8% in organic, local-currency terms) to EUR 55.9 million. The operating result increased from EUR 7.2 million to EUR 8.3 million while the operating margin hit 14.9%.
The Enclosure Systems division saw very high demand in almost all market segments. The temporary unavailability of critical electronic components meant that for a time it was not possible to handle requests for human-machine interface (HMI) solutions. The division is making targeted investments in new product developments. For example, a new group of explosion-proof enclosure products for highly explosive gases such as hydrogen was successfully certified.
The purchasing managers' indices for the industrial sector continue to point to growth in most world regions. Reflecting this, the Phoenix Mecano Group has full order books in all business areas.
High raw material and energy costs, rising interest and inflation rates and the war in Ukraine are creating uncertainty. In China, where the government is tackling the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, four Phoenix Mecano Group sites are affected to varying degrees by lockdowns. There are also indirect impacts caused by transport-capacity and component bottlenecks.
Despite these challenges, Phoenix Mecano sees promising growth opportunities in the current environment. By focusing on the core areas of smart furniture and factory automation, the Group can leverage its strong market positions to achieve further profitable growth. Population ageing means that the demand for electric-drive-powered comfort and healthcare furniture with electric adjustment options for ergonomics is likely to continue rising. Demographic change is also a factor in the global shortage of skilled workers, which is fuelling investment in more highly automated manufacturing equipment worldwide.
Phoenix Mecano's management is focused on increasing the profitability of the DOT Group, while also implementing necessary price rises and maintaining delivery capability in all divisions. Phoenix Mecano's management and Board of Directors are confident of achieving a further increase in sales and a double-digit percentage improvement in operating result (EBIT) in financial year 2022.
Thanks to the Group's stable balance sheet and strong cash flow, the Board of Directors is able to propose a dividend payment of CHF 15 (previous year: CHF 8) to the Shareholders' General Meeting.
Link to the Annual Report 2021:
Link to the presentation of the annual result 2021 and Q1 2022:
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