The Nordex Group posted a 30.6 percent increase in sales to EUR 259.0 million in the first quarter of 2013 (previous year: EUR 198.3 million). This performance was underpinned by strong business in the core European region, which contributed 94 percent of sales. On the other hand, business in America contracted by a substantial 57.6 percent, accounting for only 5 percent of consolidated sales, while Asian business remained persistently weak.
The greater volume of business was also reflected in production and installation activity. Thus, Nordex produced 60 percent more turbines in the first quarter, completing more than twice the capacity of the same period of the previous year.
This performance together with reduced structural costs in the United States and China, which had previously operated below capacity, resulted in a substantial improvement in operating earnings. As a result, the loss at EBIT level came to EUR 0.6 million as of March 31 (previous year: loss of EUR 9.0 million) and was therefore fully in line with budget. The consolidated net loss was reduced by 40 percent to EUR 8.4 million (previous year: loss of EUR 14.0 million).
Due to increased purchasing and production activity, the working capital ratio widened to 11.8 percent (December 31 2012: 8.7 percent), with cash and cash equivalents declining by 29.3 percent to EUR 194.2 million (December 31 2012: EUR 224.3 million). Net cash outflow from operating activities amounted to EUR 60.0 million (Q1/2012: inflow of EUR 34.8 million).
Order intake continued to climb in the first three months of 2013. At EUR 327.9 million, new business rose by 5 percent, compared with the high level of the same period last year (Q1/2012: EUR 312.3 million). This performance was driven by sales successes in Northern Europe, particularly in the domestic German market, as well as successful marketing of the N117/2400 low-wind turbine. Thanks to the best first quarter since 2008, firmly financed orders grew to EUR 1,141 million (previous year: EUR 837 million), thus creating a solid basis for the company to achieve its full-year sales target.
The Management Board of Nordex SE confirms its forecast for 2013 and expects a further increase in sales to EUR 1.2 – 1.3 billion (2013: EUR 1,075 million). Given slightly weaker capacity utilisation in the first half of the year compared with the second half, management expects operating earnings to improve in the final quarters, resulting in a full-year EBIT margin of 2 – 3 percent.
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