Dynamic start into financial year 2011/2012 - ISRA continues double-digit profitable growth

ISRA VISION AG: 1st Quarter 2011/2012 - Revenues grow by 14 %, EBT by 16 %

(PresseBox) ( Darmstadt, )
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- Revenue growth plus 14 % to 18.4 mill. € (compared to previous year's quarter)
- EBT growth plus 16 % (compared to previous year's quarter)
- Gross margin with 60 % on target level (PY: 59 %)
- Good margins:
* EBITDA margin: 26 % (PY: 26 %; FY 10/11: 25 %)
* EBIT margin: 17 % (PY: 17 %; FY 10/11: 17 %)
* EBT margin: 16 % (PY: 15 %; FY 10/11: 16 %)
- Order backlog with 43 mill. euros at a high level
- Dividend proposal raised to 0.25 € (PY: 0.20 €)
- Profitable double-digit growth with at least stable margins expected
- Positive cash flow development expected with additional growth
- Continued focus on medium term revenue goal of 100 mill. € ("100+")
- External growth remains part of growth strategy

ISRA VISION AG (ISIN: DE 0005488100), one of the world's leading companies of industrial image processing (Machine Vision), global market leader in surface inspection systems, and one of the leading 3D Machine Vision providers, continued its dynamic double-digit growth from the previous financial year in the first quarter of the 2011/2012 financial year. Quarterly revenues climbed by 14 percent to 18.4 million euros (PY: 16.1 million euros) and EBT (Earnings Before Taxes) increased by 16 percent to 3.2 million euros (PY: 2.7 million euros).

EBT margin to total output improved in the first three month (October 01 to December 31, 2011) of the 2011/2012 financial year compared to the same period of the previous year by one percentage point to 16 percent, thereby continuing at the level of the last financial year (FY 10/11: 16 percent). EBIT (Earnings Before Interest and Taxes) rose by 13 percent to 3.4 million euros (PY: 3.0 million euros), which corresponds to an EBIT margin to total output of 17 percent (PY: 17 percent; FY 10/11: 17 percent). EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization) improved by eleven percent to 5.3 million euros (PY: 4.8 million euros) and reached a margin of 26 percent, similar to the period of the previous year (FY 10/11: 25 percent) compared to total output.

The gross margin - an important indicator (total output minus material and labor costs for production and engineering) - rose by one percentage point to 60 percent compared to the same quarter of the previous year (PY: 59 percent). Equity capital increased to 99.9 million euros. This resulted in an equity ratio of 58 percent (September 30, 2011: 57 percent). As a result of the high order backlog on the reporting date December 31, 2011, cash flow from operating activity amounted to 1.0 million euros (PY: 2.0 million euros). With the good equity ratio and the available financial resources, ISRA is has a solid capital base for future growth.

The strong order backlog of 43 million euros is also the result of intensive sales activities. Order entries come from all important regions. As expected, Europe and Asia have shown strong impulses. North America also contributed to growth. After investments in expanding the regional presence in Russia and South America, initial indications confirm the planned development in these future growth regions for ISRA.

In the reporting quarter, ISRA grew in both segments. In the Surface Vision sector, Paper, Metal, Specialty Paper and Print business units provide a strong contribution to the high order backlogs. In the Industrial Automation segment, in which ISRA is now concentrating almost exclusively on the automotive industry, the dynamic growth increase of the last financial year also continued in the reporting quarter. Strong demand was recorded particularly from German and West European automobile manufacturers. Intensified sales activities in North America and Asia also show further impulses in these regions.

Revenues in the Surface Vision segment increased by 15 percent from 13.6 million euros to 15.6 million euros. In the Industrial Automation division, revenues increased to 2.8 million euros (PY: 2.5 million euros). Profitability also rose in both segments; EBIT for Surface Vision increased by 14 percent to 2.8 million euros (PY: 2.5 million euros), which corresponds to a margin to total output of 17 percent (PY: 17 percent). For Industrial Automation, EBIT climbed from 0.5 million euros to 0.6 million euros. This corresponds to an EBIT margin of 17 percent (PY: 18 percent) compared to total output.

For the current financial year, the company plans to continue the positive development from the first quarter for the Specialty Paper industry. Also for the Print unit a continued positive business development is expected. Paper profits from the recent innovations introduced to the market. In the Plastics business area, ISRA significantly expanded its portfolio for this dynamically growing industry with innovative applications. The sales and marketing activities in the segments Glass and Metal will be further intensified and new products will be introduced to the markets so that revenues in these industries can also continue their positive development. In the solar industry, the company relies particularly on new customers in Asia.

In the 2011/2012 financial year, ISRA concentrates again on the double-digit, profitable growth strategy. Important steps on this way are, among others the successful introduction of innovative applications and solutions. The considerably investments in innovations, the consequent regional expansion of its presence around the globe, the creation of a customer portfolio with internationally active major players as well as the constant investments in the company organization have created a solid base for additional growth. The company plans that revenue growth develops stronger than investments in the future which will have a medium-term beneficial effect on cash flow. Additional positive cash flow effects are expected from the optimization of production through further lean production measures to reduce the working capital.

Based on the profitable growth in the past financial year, management proposed to the General Meeting the payment of an increased dividend of 0.25 euro per share (PY: 0.20 euro) for the 2010/2011 financial year, thereby underscoring the continuous, sustainable dividend policy of recent years.

Besides organic growth, pursuing external growth by acquiring suitable companies also remains an important part of the long-term growth strategy. For the target companies, a meaningful expansion of the product portfolio, an increase of the market shares, the development of new markets and the integrability are at the centre of the examinations in advance of an acquisition.

Management is currently actively concentrating on several possible acquisition projects and, following a positive evaluation result, plans on finalizing at least one of the projects in the next few months.

The positive growth in revenues in the first quarter of 2011/2012 and the order backlog of 43 million euros are a solid basis for the current financial year. For 2011/2012 (October 01, 2011 - September 30, 2012), the company continues to plan double-digit organic revenue growth to more than 80 million euros and at least stable margins. Continued improvement of the margins remains at the focus of management, just like the goal of surpassing the revenue mark of 100 million euros over the medium term.
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