CURRENT NEWS

Vienna, February 20, 2009

PRESS RELEASE NO. 1/2009

SEMPERIT AG HOLDING ANNOUNCES PRELIMINARY RESULTS FOR 2008: FURTHER REVENUE GROWTH

  • Revenue up 7.8% to EUR 655.3 million
  • Difficult business environment expected in the 2009 financial year

Vienna, February 20, 2009 – For the Semperit Group, the 2008 financial year was characterized by massive raw material price increases and a rapid downturn in economic growth in the second half-year. Despite this difficult economic environment, the company succeeded in raising revenue by 7.8%, to EUR 655.3 million.

2007 2008 vorläufig Veränderung in %
Revenue in EUR million 607.8 655.3 + 7.8
EBT in EUR million 59.6 58.1 - 2.5

In spite of repeated price increases, the drastic price rises for raw materials in 2008 could not be fully compensated for. In particular, price negotiations carried out with customers in the second half of the year were hardly successful due to the impending downswing in the real economy. Accordingly, earnings before tax (EBT) decreased to EUR 58.1 million (previous year: EUR 59.6 million).

MASSIVE INCREASE IN RAW MATERIAL PRICES

All segments were faced with the challenge of coping with high raw material prices in 2008. Starting in the first quarter, there was a continuous price rise for natural and synthetic rubber. Whereas the price for natural rubber peaked in August and declined slightly afterwards, the prices for different types of synthetic rubber reached record levels at the end of October. Many other raw materials were also subject to a wave of price increases, such as chemicals, fillers and wires. As a result, the cost of materials as a percentage of operating revenues climbed from 55.5% in the previous year to 57.7% in 2008. 

DEVELOPMENT IN THE SEGMENTS

The Sempermed segment was not impacted by the overall cyclical development and therefore reported a 10.8% growth in revenue to EUR 242.8 million. Business in the Semperflex segment was quite dynamic in the first half of 2008, but was confronted with a lower level of orders in the third quarter and a slump in demand in the final months of the year. Nevertheless, Semperflex managed to raise revenue for the year by 2.6%, to EUR 166.0 million. The Semperform segment increased its total revenue by 6.8%, to EUR 119.0 million, although sales development varied according to segment. Revenue in the Sempertrans segment climbed from EUR 115.6 million in the previous year to EUR 127.5 million (+ 10.2%), which was based on the good demand for conveyor belts prevailing throughout 2008.

OUTLOOK

The full impact of the global economic crisis is expected to be felt in 2009. With the exception of the Sempermed segment, which primarily focuses on products for the medical sector, management expects a decline in demand in all other segments.  

The current state of the global economy will not leave Semperit unaffected. However, due to the good competitive position and a solid capital structure with a high equity ratio, the Management Board expects the company to emerge even stronger from this crisis and gain market shares. In 2008, the Semperit Group already implemented a series of measures designed to increase profitability through reduced fixed costs and further process optimization in its business operations. In addition, a decrease in raw material prices should relieve to some extent the tight material cost situation.

The final results will be presented on April 6, 2009.

Please direct any inquiries to:

Semperit AG Holding
Investor Relations
Sybille Bernhardt
Tel.: +43 (1) 79 777-210
E-mail: sybille.bernhardt@semperitgroup.com

 

Contact

Monika Riedel
Director Group Communications and Sustainability
T +43 1 79777-620