euro adhoc: SW Umwelttechnik Stoiser & Wolschner AG / Quarterly or Semiannual Financial Statements / SW Umwelttechnik 1. announces results for first quarter of 2003 (E)

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  • Revenue down by 13% due to harsh weather conditions
  • Two-shift working introduced at South Budapest factory
  • Positive outlook in light of 13% increase in order backlog

SW Umwelttechnik recorded a 12.8% decrease in revenue from EUR 9.5 million (m) to EUR 8.3m in the first quarter of 2003. The reason for this was the unusually long winter in Central and Eastern Europe which affected all Group sites. In Germany and to some extent in Austria, this effect was compounded by the low level of activity in the construction industry.

As a result of these divergent market trends the contribution of Hungarian sales to total revenue rose from 60% to 68% while that of Austria fell from 33% to 21%; other EU member states accounted for 11% of revenue. Due to the strong showing in Hungary there was a shift in the relative contributions of the Group’s business sectors, with the Infrastructure sector’s share of revenue rising from 33% to 39% and that of the Engineering sector growing from 26% to 30%. The Water Conservation sector generated 31% of total revenue compared to 41% in the like period of 2002.

It should be noted that SW Umwelttechnik’s results for the first quarter do not provide a reliable indication of performance for the year as a whole, as only 10-15% of annual revenue is generated during the period, and sales are heavily dependent on weather conditions. Owing to the different seasonal distribution of earnings and expenses, earnings in the first quarter are normally negative.

In line with the contraction in revenue, EBITDA for the period was negative by EUR 1.3m compared to EUR 0.4m in the first quarter of 2002, and the loss before interest and tax (negative EBIT) widened from EUR 1.3m to EUR 2.3m. The devaluation of the Hungarian forint against the euro led to an increase in finance cost to EUR 0.9m, from EUR 0.2m in the same period of 2002, meaning that the loss on ordinary activities rose from EUR 1.5m to EUR 3.2m.

Investment program focused on Hungary

In 2003 the company’s Hungarian operations will again be the main focus of investment, and 75% of planned capital expenditure of EUR 5m will be channelled to them. Some 29% of the overall investment budget was spent in the first quarter. The commencement of two-shift working at the South Budapest factory marked the attainment of the planned level of capacity utilisation.

The company’s workforce at the end of the first quarter of 2003 was 683 compared to 734 in 2002.

Outlook

Management is cautiously optimistic about the rest of 2003.

Hungary continues to enjoy rapid economic growth and still has a vast investment backlog, but prospects are increasingly clouded by large budget deficits and reduced opportunities for obtaining public project finance. In Austria and Germany planned budget consolidation and weak activity in the construction industry point towards stabilisation of demand at low levels.

In the light of a 13% increase in order backlog from EUR 22m to EUR 25m and satisfactory revenue in April management anticipates revenue and earnings growth for 2003 as a whole.

  • In Hungary the additional capacity at the South Budapest site should lead to a significant increase in SW Umwelttechnik’s market shares.
  • New products developed in Austria and Germany (surface water protection and biogas systems, and masts) should sell well.
  • Preparations are being made for phased entry to the markets of other EU candidate countries. In Romania construction of a factory will commence in 2003 or 2004.

Further inquiry note:
DI Heinz Wolschner, Vorstand der SW Umwelttechnik
Tel.: 0043/463/32109-0, Fax: 0043/463/37667
MMag. Christian Riel, Finanzen/Investor Relations
Tel.: 0043/664/4337105, Fax: 0043/1/3688686, christian.riel@sw-umwelttechnik.at
Website: http://www.sw-umwelttechnik.at
Tel: 0043-463-32109
FAX: 0043-463-37667
Email: office@sw-umwelttechnik.at

end of announcement euro adhoc

Emittent: SW Umwelttechnik Stoiser & Wolschner AG
Bahnstraße 87-93
AT-A-9020 Klagenfurt
Tel: 0043-463-32109
FAX: 0043-463-37667
Email: office@sw-umwelttechnik.at
WWW: http://www.sw-umwelttechnik.at
ISIN: AT0000808209
WKN: 080820
Indizes: ATX Prime, ViDX, WBI
Börsen: official dealing Wiener Börse AG; free trade Berliner Wertpapierbörse, Börse Düsseldorf, Baden-Württembergische Wertpapierbörse
Branche: Technology
Sprache: Englisch

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