euro adhoc: ESCADA AG / Quarterly or Semiannual Financial Statements / ESCADA Increases 2001/2002 Dividend to EUR 0.41 per Share (E)

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Aschheim/Munich, February 24, 2003. At the shareholder´s meeting on April 10, 2003, Board of Management and Supervisory Board of ESCADA AG will propose increasing the dividend per common share for fiscal 2001/2002 (Oct. 31) from EUR 0.31 to EUR 0.41. The increase acknowledges that the ESCADA Group has completed its turnaround, and has a positive earnings outlook for the current fiscal year. According to the audited consolidated financial statements for 2001/2002, sales amounted to EUR 772.9 million (previous year: EUR 846.2 million). After adjustments for consolidation and de-consolidation effects, revenue was down 4.1 per cent, and thus fully in line with the company’s expectations. Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) improved from EUR minus 17.1 million to EUR 25.1 million. Profit after taxes reached EUR 4.4 million (previous year: EUR minus 24.2 million). Net debt was reduced by EUR 49.9 million to EUR 264.7 million.
As projected and announced, sales and EBIT for the first quarter of fiscal 2002/2003 were below the results for the same period of the previous year. Following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and mindful of the adverse market environment, ESCADA had intentionally dispatched less merchandise to its own shops and those of franchisees, as a way of minimizing risks and safeguarding gross profits. This policy was first reflected in sales figures of the second half of 2001/2002 and now also in the first quarter 2002/2003. First quarter of 2001/2002 had not been affected by this policy and thus presents a very high baseline for comparison. Preliminary calculations indicate that Group sales for the first quarter were EUR 155 million (previous year: EUR 210.8 million). After adjustments for divestments, the decline was 13.8 per cent. Gross profit margin improved from 63.3 per cent to 65.5 per cent. EBIT amounted to EUR 0.5 million (previous year: EUR 11.9 million). Costs on the basis of an adjusted portfolio were slightly down, at EUR 108 million. Due to the positive orders situation for all 2003 fall/winter collections and despite the adverse market environment, management still expects EBIT for the full year to increase significantly to around EUR 30 million.

Further inquiry note:
Viona Brandt
Tel.: +49 (0)89 9944 1336
Tel: +49 (0)89 9944 1336
FAX: +49 (0)89 9944 1500

end of announcement euro adhoc

Emittent: ESCADA AG
Margaretha-Ley-Ring 1
DE-85609 München
Tel: +49 (0)89 9944 1336
FAX: +49 (0)89 9944 1500
ISIN: DE0005692107
WKN: 569210
Indizes: MDAX
Börsen: free trade Baden-Württembergische Wertpapierbörse, Börse Düsseldorf, Hamburger Wertpapierbörse; official dealing Bayerische Börse, Berliner Wertpapierbörse, Frankfurter Wertpapierbörse; regulated dealing Bremer Wertpapierbörse (BWB)
Branche: Clothing
Sprache: Englisch