Grammer AG continues to grow despite challenging environment
Nine-month revenue up 6.0 % year-over-year to EUR 858.7 million / Net profit improves 12.7 % over the prior year to EUR 17.8 million / Unplanned market slump in Brazil continues to burden operating profit
Contrary to revenue and earnings, operating profit (EBIT) was down slightly in the first three quarters of 2012. Both one-time startup costs for new products and pronounced weakness in the Brazilian market - which weighed on EBIT performance in the first half as well - continued to have a negative impact in Q3, which could not be fully compensated by stronger performance in other areas. Nine-month EBIT receded slightly from EUR 36.0 million last year to EUR 34.3 million in 2012.
Looking at the third quarter alone, group revenue rose from EUR 272.9 million in the prior-year quarter to EUR 285.3 million in Q3 2012, despite an ongoing cool-down in core markets. Third-quarter EBIT improved marginally, from EUR 10.2 million to EUR 10.5 million.
Shareholders' equity was up by EUR 21.4 million over 2011, totaling EUR 223.9 million on September 30, 2012. Accordingly, the equity ratio increased by one percentage point to 34 %. Grammer Group's debt was further reduced and gearing at the end of the third quarter was down by 13 percentage points to 44 % (September 30, 2011: 57 %).
Automotive division with pleasing revenue growth in the third quarter
Grammer AG's Automotive division saw revenue increase by 3.3 % from EUR 508.1 million last year to EUR 524.7 million in the first three quarters of this year. In the third quarter alone, revenue rose by 8.2 % to EUR 180.8 million (2011: 167.1). New product launches in the spring, along with the focus on the premium segment, made this pleasing performance possible, despite the general trend toward contraction in worldwide car markets. The Automotive division thus carried revenue growth for the entire Grammer Group in the third quarter. Operating profit in the Automotive division in the first nine months totaled EUR 21.4 million, another improvement over the prior year (2011: 18.9). Third-quarter operating profit of EUR 6.2 million represents an increase of EUR 2.2 million over the same quarter last year.
Seating Systems continues growth trend despite difficult market environment
Revenue in Grammer AG's Seating Systems division totaled EUR 347.6 million in the first three quarters of this year (2011: 322.4). This represents an increase of 7.8 %. Despite continued high demand for offroad vehicles and launches of new truck products in Europe, the weakness of sales in Brazil impacted revenue development in the division. Seating Systems revenue was therefore just under 3.0 % lower in the third quarter at EUR 108.7 million (Q3 11: 112.0). These factors - in conjunction with the necessary expansion of capacities through newly launched truck seat production - weighed on earnings. In the first three quarters, EBIT declined from EUR 24.2 million to EUR 18.9 million. Third-quarter EBIT was EUR 6.1 million (Q3 11: 7.8).
With a view to full-year 2012, Grammer expects further weakening of the economic situation and customer demand in its core markets. Despite the already strong levels achieved in 2011, Grammer Group anticipates continued improvements in revenue performance. Revenue growth will exceed prior-year levels by low single digits in 2012, though revenue in the remaining months of the year will fall short of the strong level seen in the final quarter of last year. Forecasted revenue performance in the fourth quarter and ongoing weakness in the Brazilian market will continue to burden the operating profit until yearend. For 2012 as a whole, however, Grammer is expecting an overall result on par with last year.
Grammer AG, Amberg, Germany, is specialized in the development and production of components and systems for automotive interiors as well as driver and passenger seats for offroad vehicles (tractors, construction machinery, forklifts), trucks, buses and trains. Our Seating Systems division comprises the truck and offroad seat segments as well as train and bus seating. In the Automotive division, we supply headrests, armrests and center console systems to premium automakers and automotive system suppliers.
Grammer is represented in 18 countries worldwide with a workforce of approx. 9,000 employees across its 24 fully consolidated subsidiaries.
Grammer shares are listed in the SDAX segment of the German Stock Exchange, and are traded on the Munich and Frankfurt stock exchanges, via the Xetra electronic trading platform and on the OTC markets of the Stuttgart, Berlin and Hamburg stock exchanges