Operating result positive despite a difficult fiscal year / One-off effects impact on result

Positive net profit planned for 2010

(PresseBox) ( Jena, )
According to provisional calculations the Jenoptik Group posted sales of just over 470 million euros for the 2009 fiscal year and generated a positive group operating result before oneoffs of more than 7 million euros. However, oneoff effects primarily due to the withdrawal from a business, closure of sites as well as to personnel measures had a significant impact on the group result. In 2010 the Group plans to again generate a positive net profit thanks to a further pickup in business and on the basis of the adjusted cost structures.

With sales of approx. 470 million euros for 2009 according to the provisional calculations, the Group posted a fall in sales of approx. 14 percent compared with 2008. It benefited in particular from the stable contribution to sales by the Defense & Civil Systems segment which recorded a figure of about 205 million euros, approximately the same as in the previous year (in prev. year 208.5 million euros). "Thanks to this stable business and our broadlybased positioning we have performed well given the difficult economic situation," said Jenoptik Chairman Michael Mertin, who announced the preliminary figures for the Jenoptik Group in Jena on Monday. As expected, at the start of 2009 sales in the semiconductor and automotive industries fell sharply as a result of the economic crisis. By contrast, in addition to the Defense & Civil Systems segment, the Traffic Solutions division, the laser systems for the photovoltaics industry and medical technology lasers all posted stable to positive performances. The Lasers & Optical Systems segment recorded sales of about 165 million euros (in prev. year 207 million euros), the Metrology segment achieved sales of about 95 million euros (in prev. year 126.3 million euros).

The group operating result before oneoffs is expected to come in at more than 7 million euros according to provisional calculations. In addition to the costs arising from the withdrawal from the midformat camera business in summer 2009 (9 million euros), oneoff effects in the total sum of approx. 27 million euros were incurred primarily as a result of the closure of sites, the personnel measures as well as oneoff restructuring costs/impairments in the 4th quarter 2009. The Jenoptik Group has reduced its regular workforce from 3,400 employees at the start of 2009 to approx. 3,000 at the beginning of 2010. As at the end of the year the need arose for redundancies in the Lasers & Material Processing, Optical Systems and Industrial Metrology divisions for operational reasons, some of these redundancies being cushioned with the help of interim employment companies. In addition to staff adjustments Jenoptik also used shorttime working and reduced the number of temporary posts. The oneoff costs associated with these measures have been included in full in the result for the year 2009. The payments in 2010 will be made out of positive operating cash flows.

Positive cash flows at previous year's level, marked reduction in net debt.

Despite the difficult economic situation, in 2009 the Jenoptik Group again succeeded in generating marked positive cash flows from operating activities slightly above the level for the previous year (prev. year 46.5 million euros). According to provisional calculations the free cash flow increased to approx. 40 million euros (prev. year 27.9 million euros). "This means we were again able to meet our investments and capital costs in full out of current cash flows and in particular to repay shortterm financial liabilities in the 4th quarter 2009," said CFO Frank Einhellinger. This led to a marked reduction in Group net debt to 159 million euros as at December 31, 2009 in comparison with the figure for the previous year (191.6 million euros).

2009 order intake just 15 percent below previous year's level. Pickup in demand continues in the 4th quarter.

According to provisional calculations the Group as a whole recorded an order intake of approx. 430 million euros. This figure does not include the major order for the German Army's new Puma infantry fighting vehicle anticipated in 2009 which will impact on the Group order intake in the current fiscal year in the sum of approx. 70 million euros. Just as the Leopard 2 the Puma is another successor system in the area of tank stabilization, where Jenoptik has been cooperating with Rheinmetall for more than 30 years. The pickup in demand, particularly from the semiconductor industry, continued in the 4th quarter of the fiscal year just past. The Jenoptik Group therefore anticipates an overall marked increase in the order intake for 2010 compared with 2009. "At this point in time we cannot as yet predict whether we will return to the level achieved in 2008," says Jenoptik Chairman Mertin. Major projects are also becoming an increasing feature of the Traffic Solutions division in particular.

Return to profit expected in 2010.

The Jenoptik Group expects an overall improvement in the business situation for the full year 2010 compared with 2009, particularly in the semiconductor, photovoltaics, medical technology automotive and traffic solution areas. "This forecast is backed by the figures in the fourth quarter, which was a good period and the best overall in the year just past in terms of sales, results and orders," said CFO Einhellinger. Overall, with just a small increase in sales which are expected in the range between 475 and 500 million euros, the Group anticipates a marked improvement in the earnings situation compared with 2009. The Group plans an operating result between 15 and 25 million euros as well as a positive net profit for the year provided that the improvement in the semiconductor industry will continue. In addition to the rising demand the full impact of the measures introduced in 2009 to reduce costs will be felt in the current fiscal year. It is therefore expected that additional cost savings well in excess of 10 million euros will be made in 2010. The cost reduction measures introduced in 2009 also included a comprehensive restructuring of the suppliers as well as process optimization throughout the company as part of the Jenoptik Excellence Program. "We have adjusted our cost structures but will continue to work vigorously towards reducing our fixed costs so we can achieve our longterm objectives," said Michael Mertin.
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