Original-Research: MAX Automation SE (von NuWays AG)

Original-Research: MAX Automation SE - from NuWays AG

Classification of NuWays AG to MAX Automation SE

Company Name: MAX Automation SE
ISIN: DE000A2DA588

Reason for the research: Update
Recommendation: BUY
from: 13.03.2024
Target price: 8.20
Target price on sight of: 12 Monaten
Last rating change: 
Analyst: Konstantin Völk

Excellent growth and profitability, soft order intake; chg.
Topic: MAX released strong FY23 results, with sales and EBITDA in line with
expectations and the company’s guidance. The sales process of the
subsidiary MA micro, which is now recognized as discontinued operations, is
still ongoing.
FY23 sales (incl. MA micro) rose by 8.3% to € 443m (eNuW: € 444m), in line
with the guidance range of € 410-470m due to a strong contribution from
bdtronic (+59% yoy), offsetting the weaker Vecoplan, NSM + Jücker and MA
micro. Q4 sales grew slightly by 3.2% yoy to € 117m (eNuW: € 117m). FY23
EBITDA (incl. MA micro) came in at € 43.2m (eNuW: € 43.9m) a 28% increase
yoy, hitting the upper end of the guidance range of € 38-44m. This implies
a 9.8% margin, up 1.5pp yoy due to normalized material prices and strong
performance of bdtronic. Q4 EBITDA increased 155% yoy to € 6.2m (eNuW: €
6.9m) with a margin of 5.3% (+ 3.2pp yoy) due to a weak Q4 in FY22.
Group order intake from continued operations decreased by 16% to € 341m,
leading to an order backlog of € 206m (-21% yoy), impacted from investment
reluctance due to the ongoing economic uncertainty and higher interest
costs. Mind you, FY22 benefited from COVID-19 catch-up effects and FY23
order intake and backlog are still on a historical high level.
Outlook for FY24e for continuing operations: MAX guides for sales of €
390-450m, in line with eNuW (€ 425m), carried by a € 206m group backlog and
a healthy order pipeline. FY24e EBITDA should come in between € 31-38m
(eNuW: € 32.7m). Despite the lower order backlog, the guidance seems to be
in reach due to the postponement of some larger orders from Q4 FY23 into
FY24e as well as improving supply chains and material prices.
bdtronic showed a dynamic top- and bottom-line development (see page two),
as a result of the fulfillment of the high order backlog and continued
strong demand for dispensing and impregnation. Sales increased 59% yoy to €
104m (eNuW: € 94.7m) and EBITDA rose by 58% with a flat development in
margins at 14%, due to large investments into growth (e.g. personell, PPE).
Order intake rose by 11% yoy to a new record high of € 104m, flagging the
technological leadership and ongoing structural trends such as
electrification of the automotive industry. Order intake in Q4 came in
rather weak at € 11m compared to € 29m in Q4 FY22, due to the postponement
of a major order to FY24e.
We expect bdtronic to deliver another year of double-digit growth in FY24e
(eNuW: 12%).
Vecoplan delivered low-single-digit growth in sales and EBITDA, while
margins remained roughly unchanged at 11.5% (FY22: 11.3%). Order intake
fell by 15.6% yoy to € 145m, due to investment reluctance in Europe and US
and the postponement of orders. However, the highly profitable service
business, which accounts for c. 1/3 of sales, recorded significant growth
during FY23.
In addition to the improving operating performance, a successful divestment
of the subsidiary MA micro (company news 08.09.2023) should be a notable
share price catalyst. This would reveal, that the value of the “parts”
clearly exceeds the current Enterprise Value of the MAX Automation group,
in our view.
We reiterate our BUY rating with an unchanged € 8.20 PT based on DCF.

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