Pfeiffer Vacuum Q 3 Results

10.11.2003

Asslar, Germany, November 4, 2003. Pfeiffer Vacuum, a leading manufacturer of high-quality vacuum pumps, vacuum gauges and mass spectrometers, as well as complete vacuum systems, announces its results for the first 9 months of 2003.

  • Now orders on the rise in the U.S.A. and Asia
  • Operating profit up sharply in Q 3
  • Weak dollar impacts sales and earnings
  • Pfeiffer Vacuum confirms year-end forecast

The company’s sales and earnings continue to be impacted by the persistent weakness of the dollar. More than one half of the decline in sales during the first nine months – €4.6 million or 4.1 percentage points – was attributable to the weakness of the dollar, with the remainder of the decline in sales stemming from the sustained weakness of the economy. The company still has not lost any market share.

The company is seeing a moderate uptick in demand, especially in the United States and Asia. Both by comparison with the previous quarter as well as year on year, there were more new orders for turbopumps, first and foremost, the company’s most important product. For the first time since the beginning of 2001, new orders in the United States were up sharply on a U.S. dollar basis, advancing by 29.5 percent from $ 22.1 million for the first 9 months of 2002 to $ 28.6 million for the first 9 months of 2003.

In recent weeks, the company’s DVD Division has received numerous orders for both production lines for prerecorded DVDs as well as for various individual components.

For the consolidated group, the ratio between new orders and sales – the book-to-bill ratio – was positive in both the 3rd quarter of 2003 as well as for the first 9 months of the year; i.e. the value of new orders was higher than sales in each period.

Given these positive signals and a further rise in new orders during October, the company is confirming its year-end sales forecast of between € 140 and 145 million.

Flexible worktime models in combination with various cost-reduction programs, as well as a more favorable product mix, led to a significantly improved margin during the 3rd quarter of 2003. An EBIT margin of 9.6 percent was able to be achieved for the first 9 months of the year (9 M 2002: 11.7 percent). The company anticipates a double-digit EBIT margin for the full year.

Sales in Germany were off by 9.9 percent, from € 32.3 million (9 M 2002) to € 29.1 million (9 M 2003). In the other European countries, sales were down by 7.4 percent, from € 36.3 million (9 M 2002) to € 33.6 million (9 M 2003). In the United States, sales on a U.S. dollar basis for the first 9 months of 2003 remained at around the same level as in the previous year. Sales in Japan went against the trend, rising by 28.6 percent from € 6.8 million to €8.7 million.

Exports to Asia and the rest of the world now account for 16.1 of total sales, as opposed to 13.5 percent for the first 9 months of 2002. The company’s close-knit network of service support points, in particular, is paying off here.

Chief Executive Officer Wolfgang Dondorf: “Our business continues to be impacted by the weak dollar. After all, we generate nearly one quarter of our sales in the United States. However it is precisely from this region that we are seeing the first signs of economic recovery, something that is painfully lacking in Germany and the other European countries. Major signals are also coming from Asia. Given rising sales, the company will be able to benefit disproportionately from its cost-reduction programs and flexible worktime models, and demonstrate its profitability.”

Fincancial Canlendar 2004

  • March 25, 2004:2003 Earnings Release, Analysts' Conference
  • May 4, 2004: Q 1 2004
  • June 16, 2004: AGM
  • August 3, 2004: 1 HY 2004
  • November 2, 2004: 9 M 2004

Except for historical information contained herein, the statements made in this release constitute forward looking statements that involve certain risks and uncertainties. Certain factors may cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in the forward looking statements, including those risks detailed from time to time in the Company’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Form 6 K for the nine months 2002 ended September 30, 2003.

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