Overview of Q1 2013:
- 1.2 gigawatts of inverter output sold (Q1 2012: 1.9 GW)
- Sales in line with guidance at €212.3 million (Q1 2012: €405.0 million)
- Export ratio of 67.5% (Q1 2012: 61.2%)
- Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) of €9.4 million (Q1 2012: €57.3 million)
- Financial independence - net cash of €375.5 million (December 31, 2012: €446.3 million)
- Equity ratio of 59.1% (Dec. 31, 2012: 61.8%)
- Managing Board confirms sales and earnings forecast for fiscal year 2013
In the first quarter of 2013, SMA Solar Technology AG (SMA/FWB: S92) sold PV inverters with an output of 1.2 gigawatts (Q1 2012: 1.9 GW) and generated sales of €212.3 million (Q1 2012: €405 million). Sales were within SMA's own guidance of €190 million to €220 million. The export ratio increased to 67.5% of sales (Q1 2012: 61.2%). This underscores SMA's outstanding international position with its excellent sales and service structures and full range of products. In the first quarter of 2013, significant growth impulses emanated from the U.S., Japan, Australia, and Thailand. Subsidy cuts in major European markets, a still unresolved debt crisis, and the possibility of punitive duties on Chinese modules in Europe had a negative effect on demand for PV inverters.
Despite the sharp decline in sales, SMA succeeded in generating positive earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) of €9.4 million in the reporting period (Q1 2012: €57.3 million). The decrease in earnings is attributable in particular to the negative trend in sales volume, the changed product mix, and high price pressure. Due to the investment in infrastructure, total depreciation and amortization increased to €17.8 million (Q1 2012: €14.5 million). This was one of the reasons why earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) fell to €-8.4 million (Q1 2012: €42.8 million). The consolidated earnings amounted to € -5.8 million in the reporting period (Q1 2012: €29.6 million). With an equity ratio of 59.1% (Dec. 31, 2012: 61.8%) and net liquidity of €375.5 million (Dec. 31, 2012: €446.3 million), SMA continues to have a very solid balance-sheet structure and can finance its further development from its own resources.
"Measured in euro, the global photovoltaic market will decline in 2013 for the first time in many years. As the global market leader, we will be especially affected by this. In such a short space of time, we will not be able to offset the sharp decline in sales with the ongoing measures for increasing productivity and saving on material costs alone. Therefore, we are forced to adjust the personnel structures to the changes in underlying conditions and the lower level of sales in the upcoming months. We will enter into negotiations with the Work Council and strive for a socially acceptable solution in the next few weeks. At the same time we have to keep an eye on the strategic goals. As part of our innovation strategy, we will develop entirely new product platforms and use our many years of experience in system technology in order to design innovative solutions for energy management," explains SMA Chief Executive Officer Pierre-Pascal Urbon.
The SMA Managing Board confirms the sales and earnings guidance for 2013 for the SMA Group. It predicts sales of € 0.9 billion to € 1.3 billion and a break-even result in the best scenario. Nevertheless, the Managing Board cannot exclude the possibility of a loss.
The quarterly financial report for January to March 2013 is available at www.SMA.de/....
This press release serves only as information and does not constitute an offer or invitation to subscribe for, acquire, hold or sell any securities of SMA Solar Technology AG (the "Company") or any present or future subsidiary of the Company (together with the Company, the "SMA Group") nor should it form the basis of, or be relied upon in connection with, any contract to purchase or subscribe for any securities in the Company or any member of the SMA Group or commitment whatsoever. Securities may not be offered or sold in the United States of America absent registration or an exemption from registration under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended.
This press release can contain future-oriented statements. Future-oriented statements are statements which do not describe facts of the past. They also include statements about our assumptions and expectations. These statements are based on plans, estimations and forecasts which the Managing Board of SMA Solar Technology AG (SMA or company) has available at this time. Future-oriented statements are therefore only valid on the day on which they are made. Future-oriented statements by nature contain risks and elements of uncertainty. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors can lead to considerable differences between the actual results, the financial position, the development or the performance of the corporation and the estimates given here. These factors include those which SMA has discussed in published reports. These reports are available on the SMA website at www.SMA.de. The company accepts no obligation whatsoever to update these future-oriented statements or to adjust them to future events or developments.