Business performance affected by strained setting

Satisfactory nine-month figures for fiscal 2008/2009

(PresseBox) ( Ehningen, )
The business performance of the Bertrandt Group is proving to be satisfactory given the difficult underlying economic and sector-specific conditions after three quarters of the current financial year 2008/2009. In the still strained market setting, the provider of development services to the international automotive and aviation industries generated revenues of EUR 293.8 million, down from EUR 316.3 million in the previous year. Operating profit came to EUR 25.8 million, down from EUR 35.5 million in the pre-year period.

Underlying conditions still demanding

"Bertrandt was able to maintain its position in a strained market setting characterized by cost pressure", said CEO Dietmar Bichler. In spite of a drop in revenues and earnings, the provider of development services was successfully standing up to the economic conditions thanks to the constant optimization of capacity, targeted cost management and programmes to improve efficiency. Consolidated revenues stood at EUR 293.8 million after three quarters of fiscal 2008/2009, down from EUR 316.3 million in the previous year. As at 30 June 2009, operating profit came to EUR 25.8 million, down from EUR 35.5 million in the pre-year period. Earnings after income taxes came to EUR 19.9 million, down from EUR 25.1 million in the previous year. Unless sales figures in the automotive sector stabilize in the long term, Bertrandt anticipates additional cost-optimization programmes being implemented by manufacturers and component suppliers. This may result in further temporary postponements of projects by the provider of development services. Under these circumstances CEO Bichler said that it would not be possible to match the revenue and earnings level of the past financial year. In spite of the strained setting Bertrandt's CEO still sees opportunities for a successful business performance in the long term. He bases this view on current trends, such as the increasing demand for environment-friendly mobility and higher safety standards.

Personnel management

On 30 June 2009 Bertrandt employed 5,476 staff across the Group (5,725 on 30 June 2008). The year-on-year decline in the number of employees was due to the targeted adjustment of capacity in some branches. Short-time working was announced at all German facilities as a precautionary measure. Bichler reaffirmed the objective of wanting to safeguard jobs in the Company on a long-term basis and to retain qualified staff. He said that the know-how of staff was being specifically promoted during the crisis by means of training measures geared to the needs of customers.
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