Q4 2022: Robust order intake and profitable growth demonstrate the strength of Permascand’s business
Year-end report 2022
Q4 2022 (Q4 2021)
- Order intake increased 43 per cent year-on-year to SEK 107 million (74)
- Sales increased 13 per cent to SEK 147 million (130)
- Operating profit totalled SEK 18 million (30), corresponding to 12 per cent (23) of revenue
- Adjusted operating profit totalled SEK 14 million (32)
- Profit after tax totalled SEK 15 million (21)
- Earnings per share amounted to SEK 0.25 (0.35)
- Cash flow from operating activities totalled SEK -5 million (33)
Jan–Dec 2022 (Jan–Dec 2021)
- Order intake increased 35 per cent, totalling SEK 508 million (377). Taking into account the write-down of a previous order, net order intake amounted to SEK 445 million.
- Sales increased 41 per cent to SEK 569 million (405)
- Operating profit totalled SEK 105 million (38), corresponding to 18 per cent (9) of revenue
- Adjusted operating profit totalled SEK 95 million (60)
- Earnings after tax totalled SEK 81 million (20)
- Earnings per share before and after dilution amounted to SEK 1.37 (0.37)
- Cash flow from operating activities totalled SEK 113 million (11)
Events during the fourth quarter of 2022
- On 15 December, Permascand announced the signing of a master supply agreement to deliver service and refurbishment of electrochemical cells to a significant client. The estimated value of the agreement is in the range of SEK 30–45 million per year for a period of two years.
The strength of Permascand’s business clearly showed through in the fourth quarter of 2022, where profitable growth and robust order intake were the result of broad and growing demand for the company’s products and solutions in combination with flexible, efficient production capacity.
2022 added up to a record-setting year where we increased sales by 40 per cent compared with full-year 2021. At the same time, we took some key strategic steps on our journey of growth, including through attractive partnership agreements and exciting customer projects.
Order intake for the fourth quarter totalled SEK 107 million. This is an increase of 43 per cent year-on-year. Order placement was primarily in Electrification & Renewables and Industrial Solutions.
Sales totalled SEK 147 million during the quarter, up 13 per cent year-on-year. Sales for the quarter were driven primarily by Industrial Solutions, where we successfully delivered on the robust order intake in late 2021 and early 2022. During the quarter, new patterns in our business segments emerged, as decreased sales and order intake in Water Treatment were offset by a strong quarter in Industrial Solutions, and Electrification & Renewables picked up momentum. This is a sign of strength showing that with efficient, flexible, and scalable production we can meet reduced demand in a segment by switching over and meeting increased demand in other segments.
Gross profit for the quarter totalled SEK 45 million, corresponding to a gross margin of 31 per cent. It is gratifying to once again report stronger profitability after lower capacity utilisation and disruptions to operations temporarily burdened profitability in the third quarter.
Electrification & Renewables
Electrification & Renewables returned one of its strongest quarters in the company’s history, with good sales and a robust order intake as a result of the high level of activity in previous quarters. We enter 2023 with a strong order book, demand that continues to increase, and an excellent outlook in the segment.
Our initiative to establish a technology and innovation hub to develop, and be a leader in, the field of hydrogen gas made tremendous steps during the quarter and continues to develop in accordance with plans. Completion of the research center, and the facility where we are introducing a new coating method, is estimated for the summer. As part of this same strategic plan, this spring we will be launching a research partnership with Umeå University and the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research (SSF in Swedish) with a focus on producing green hydrogen without or with the reduced use of precious metals, with lowered production costs and reduced climate impact as goals. We are continuing to invest in the organization and in our plant to secure our leading position and to enhance the efficiency of our processes and working methods. Naturally, this will have some impact on our profitability over the short term, but this way we will be ready for commercial orders for hydrogen – the first of which is expected to come in during the year. The partnership with RES was strengthened during the year after signing a declaration of intent in April on the joint development of a commercial research center in a new production facility in the town of Alby in Ånge Municipality. This partnership strengthens our prospects for building up a customer portfolio in Sweden and the Nordic region – a welcome contribution to the base of international customers we have today.
The green transition pushed the growing demand in Industrial Solutions at a faster pace than previously expected. Here, we have won new customers while demand grows among existing customers. One successful advance was the two-year framework agreement for service and recoating of electrochemical cells that we signed with a major existing customer. The agreement is estimated to be worth between SEK 30–45 million per year, with an option to extend for an additional two years.
We experienced a slowdown in Water Treatment during the quarter. The order pattern in marine transport has changed, as order placement today is more frequent at shorter notice and with less scope than in previous years when customers often placed orders on an annual basis. This, combined with a more competitive market with increased price pressures, gave rise to some challenges that we are meeting with the next generation of water purification cells so as to best confront the final phase of the installation cycle, which is expected to reach its peak in 2024.
Given a high level of activity, we expect the robust order intake in Industrial Solutions to continue and an increase in Electrification & Renewables. We therefore expect that these segments will offset the slowing growth in Water Treatment for ballast water until the segment’s aftermarket business is expected to achieve significant revenue after 2026. We are also seeing growing interest in industrial water purification, though levels remain low. The total ballast water treatment market is expected to remain the same size as before, and our market shares unchanged. In our opinion, orders for remaining installations will be placed at shorter intervals before installation compared to previously. So far, production for Electrification & Renewables is generally in smaller series compared with production in Water Treatment, which initially requires larger production adjustments with lower efficiency as a result. Over the short term, this could lower profitability before larger orders come in and production can take place in larger series and thus with stronger profitability.
We leave a year with record-setting sales, strong profitability, and several key strategic successes behind us. We enter 2023 with confidence owing to the high level of activity with more customer inquiries as well as a strong order book that is more equally divided among our business segments. In conclusion, I would like to extend a warm thanks to all our customers, suppliers, partners, and especially our fantastic employees for their impressive efforts that allow Permascand to continue to develop and facilitate the global green transformation.
Peter Lundström, CEO
CEO Peter Lundström and CFO Linda Ekman will present the report in a conference call today 9 February at 10:30 CET. The presentation will be held in English and will conclude with a Q&A session.
Link to presentation: https://ir.financialhearings.com/permascand-top-holding-q4-2022
To participate via telephone please dial-in on the numbers below:
US: +1-412-317-6300 , Pin code: 0469191#
Link to report
The report is attached to this announcement and can be found at: https://permascand.com/investors/financial-reports/