MAX Automation SE: Above-average earnings growth in 2017 (news with additional features)

DGAP-News: MAX Automation SE / Key word(s): Final Results

29.03.2018 / 08:17
The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.



MAX Automation SE: Above-average earnings growth in 2017

- Group sales increase by 11.6% to EUR 376.2 million

- EBIT before PPA amortization up 28.0% to EUR 22.2 million

- Order backlog reaches record level of EUR 198.6 million

- Progressive internationalization opens up opportunities for development in 2018

Düsseldorf, March 29, 2018 - MAX Automation Group developed in line with its own expectations in fiscal year 2017 and increased its profitability. Group sales for the high-tech mechanical engineering company grew dynamically by around 11.6% to EUR 376.2 million, while consolidated net income before amortization from purchase price allocation rose disproportionately by 28.0% to EUR 22.2 million. At EUR 198.6 million, MAX Automation's order backlog rose again to record level. Both the Industrial Automation and Environmental Technology Group segments contributed to this positive development.

MAX Automation SE will continue its dividend policy of previous years. At the Annual General Meeting on May 18, 2018, the Administrative Board plans to propose a dividend of EUR 0.15 per share for fiscal year 2017, unchanged from the previous year. The distribution sum would thus amount to EUR 4.4 million (2016: EUR 4.0 million).

Daniel Fink, CEO of MAX Automation AG: "MAX Automation's satisfactory business performance in 2017 shows that our medium-term growth strategy 2021 is taking effect. Overall, we made significant progress on it in the past year: in Industrial Automation, we advanced the internationalization of our company by founding MAX Automation North America Inc. in the US and by acquiring a majority stake in MAX Automation (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. in China. This enables us to provide comprehensive support to our globally operating customers, especially in the automotive sector, and to fully exploit our technological strengths. In Environmental Technology, we developed and committed ourselves to a growth strategy for our subsidiary Vecoplan after careful analysis of market potentials. MAX therefore has every reason to be optimistic for the future."

Key Group figures for 2017

- Consolidated order intake amounted to EUR 383.6 million, remaining at a high level (2016: EUR 395.7 million; -3.1%).

- Consolidated order backlog as of December 31, 2017, increased by 2.5% to EUR 198.6 million, reaching another record level (December 31, 2016: EUR 193.8 million). The book-to-bill ratio was 1.02.

- Group sales rose to EUR 376.2 million in 2017, up 11.6% on the previous year (EUR 337.1 million). The consolidated sales goal of at least EUR 370 million was thus met.

- Consolidated earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) and before depreciation from purchase price allocations (PPA depreciation) grew disproportionately to sales by 28.0% to EUR 22.2 million (2016: EUR 17.4 million). This was also in line with expectations. EBIT before PPA included expenses from currency effects of EUR 0.7 million (previous year: income from currency effects of EUR 0.4 million), while depreciation and amortization from PPA fell significantly as planned from EUR 5.0 million to EUR 2.0 million.

- The EBIT margin in relation to total operating performance improved from 5.1% to 6.0%.

- The Group posted an annual result of EUR 14.1 million, an increase of 69.4% on the previous year (2016: EUR 8.3 million).

- Group equity increased by 24.9% to EUR 139.0 million as of December 31, 2017, due to the year's high net interest income and the successful placement of the cash capital increase in 2017. The equity ratio was 43.0%.

- Net debt as of December 31, 2017, decreased significantly as planned and amounted to EUR 47.1 million, 32.6% less than on the same reporting date of the previous year (2016: EUR 69.9 million).

Development of the Group segments in 2017
The Industrial Automation segment recorded consolidated order intake of EUR 290.7 million (previous year: EUR 300.7 million; -3.3%). The order backlog rose as of December 31, 2017, by 2.9% to a record level of EUR 168.9 million (December 31, 2016: EUR 164.1 million). Sales increased by 19.4% to EUR 286.4 million (2016: EUR 239.8 million). EBIT before PPA increased to EUR 19.8 million (2016: EUR 16.8 million; +17.5%). The satisfactory course of business resulted particularly from the strong order situation in the automotive sector, but demand also strongly increased in the medical technology sector.

In the Environmental Technology segment, which includes the Vecoplan Group, measures initiated in the previous year to improve the cost structure were continued in 2017. As a result, profitability increased significantly while the business volume remained unchanged and the company was able to react much more quickly to the typical volatility of its relevant markets. As a result, EBIT before PPA increased from EUR 1.8 million to EUR 6.5 million. This development was supported by the renewed product portfolio and the expanded service business. Sales declined to EUR 89.4 million (2016: EUR 97.4 million; -8.1%). At EUR 92.9 million, consolidated order intake was slightly down on the previous year (2016: EUR 95.0 million; -2.2%). At EUR 29.7 million, order backlog as of December 31, 2017, was on par with the same period of the previous year.

MAX Automation with new Internet presence
MAX Automation SE has redesigned its Internet presence at The new website has been created in the company's corporate design and has been optimized for mobile use. In the Investor Relations section, investors will still find all relevant information and documents as well as easy contact to MAX Automation SE.

Outlook for fiscal year 2018
The Management Board sees MAX Automation strategically well positioned with the progress it made in "Strategy 2021" and its focus on important growth drivers in Industrial Automation and Environmental Technology. It expects new opportunities from the progressive internationalization of MAX Automation: in the Industrial Automation Group segment, MAX Automation North America Inc. has expanded the network of sites in the US for comprehensive customer support, especially in the automotive and medical technology sectors. With its investment in MAX Automation (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. in China, the company has sites in the most important production locations of the automotive industry in the country and has good access to Chinese suppliers. In the Environmental Technology segment, the market position of the Vecoplan subsidiary is to be further improved through a strategic partnership.

Due to new regulations for the International Financial Reporting Standard (IFRS) 15 and the resulting changes in accounting in project business, consolidated earnings will decline in the first quarter of 2018. This temporary effect will be fully compensated for in the course of the fiscal year.

Based on the current portfolio, the Management Board expects Group sales of at least EUR 400 million and Group EBIT before PPA amortization of at least EUR 26 million for the current fiscal year.

Frank Elsner / Frank Paschen
Frank Elsner Kommunikation für Unternehmen GmbH
Phone: +49 - 5404 - 91 92 0
Fax: +49 - 5404 - 91 92 29

About MAX Automation SE
MAX Automation SE (Securities Identification Number: A2DA58) with its headquarters in Düsseldorf is an internationally active high-tech mechanical engineering Group and a leading full-service supplier of integrated and sophisticated system and component solutions. Its operational business is divided into two segments. In the Industrial Automation segment, the Group is considered to be a trendsetter in the development and manufacturing of integrated and proprietary solutions for use in manufacturing and assembly in the automotive industry, medical technology, packaging machines and the electronics industry due to its comprehensive technological know-how. In the Environmental Technology segment, MAX Automation develops and installs innovative systems for use by the recycling, energy and raw materials industries.

Additional features:

Document title: Corporate News_Year-end-result 2017

29.03.2018 Dissemination of a Corporate News, transmitted by DGAP - a service of EQS Group AG.
The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.

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