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Plaut announces six months figures
Improved operating performanc
and stronger order backlog
Munich/Salzburg (ots) - Plaut AG (Securities Code Number 918 703) announces today its six months figures for fiscal 2001. In the first half of 2001, Plaut generated revenues of EUR 150.6 million, an increase of 13.9% compared with the same period last year (EUR 132.2 million). In the second quarter alone, the company generated revenues of EUR 75.5 million, consistent with analysts' expectations. This figure corresponds to a rise of 9.3% over the second quarter of the previous year (EUR 69.0 million). With orders in hand steadily rising, the company's current backlog has grown to approx. 90,000 consulting days, which corresponds to a volume of more than five months. Furthermore, we estimate our weighted pipeline of future business to be over 200,000 consulting days. Earnings before interest, tax and amortisation (EBITA, before restructuring charges) in the second quarter improved to EUR 1.9 million, after a loss in Q1 of EUR -0.2 million. EBITA was therefore EUR 1.7 million in the first six months of 2001, compared to EUR 6.2 million in the same period last year. The group loss after tax and restructuring charges (see below) for the first half was EUR -5.6 million, or a loss of EUR -0.28 per share, compared to a profit of EUR 3.8 million, or EUR 0.19 per share, in the same period last year. In Q2, the net loss was EUR -2.3 million or 0.11 per share, compared to a profit of EUR 2.8 million, or EUR 0.14 in the second quarter of 2000. On an EBITDA level, Plaut generated EUR 4.0 million in Q2 (EUR 5.7 million in the first half), compared to EUR 7.0 (EUR 10.2 million, respectively) during the same period of last year. Plaut continued a number of initiatives started in the first quarter in order to improve the operating performance of the company. These included cost reduction measures such as headcount decreases, office closures, and reduction or freezing of non-personnel expenses as well as productivity improvements through a significant increase in the group average utilisation rate of consultants. The cost reduction programme led to restructuring charges in the second quarter of EUR 2.2 million, of which EUR 1.2 million occurred in the Americas and the balance in Europe. As immediate effects of these programmes, profitability in Plaut's previously loss-generating operations in the UK and Brazil has been restored already within Q2. After a return to operating profitability on group level in the second quarter, Plaut is confident that the measures taken in the last months will further improve its operating margins during the second half of the year. Cash flow from continuing operations increased to EUR 7.6 million in the second quarter compared to EUR -5.2 million in Q1. This equates to a cash flow of EUR 2.4 million for the first half of 2001, which represents also an improvement over the same period of last year with its cash outflow of EUR -7.4 million. This positive development is mainly due to an improved management of the current receivables and, compared to the first quarter 2001, an enhanced profitability of the company. Due to the measures taken, Plaut expects a further reduction of its receivables in the second half of the year. Based on the strong backlog in the consulting business and the measures that were implemented to improve profitability, Plaut expects to meet analysts' projections for the full year 2001 - even if overall economic conditions remain challenging. As of 30 June 2001, Plaut has 1,857 employees, 46 more than a year ago. Compared to 2004 employees on 31 December 2000, this represents a decrease of 7%. About Plaut AG Plaut AG is an independent, internationally operating management consulting group with a global presence of 34 subsidiaries in 18 countries. As a full solution provider offering a suite of services from strategy consulting to IT-outsourcing, and with sales revenues amounting to EUR 291 million (in 2000), it is one of the leading management consulting companies worldwide. Since November 9, 1999, Plaut AG is listed on the "Neuer Market" of the Frankfurt stock exchange (PUTG.F; Securities Code Number 918 703). You can receive the complete half-year report and further information about the Plaut-group under www.plaut.de/ir or at: Plaut Aktiengesellschaft At a Glance PLAUT: A HALF-YEAR COMPARISON AS OF JUNE 30 June 30, 2001 June 30, 2000 in EUR '000 in EUR '00 Income Data Revenues 150,579 132,201 Growth in revenues in % compared to previous year 14 12 Financial data Investments 4,209 23,313 Depreciation and amortization 4,026 4,000 Result data EBITA 1,667 6,247 EBIT - 68 5,222 Group loss after tax and restructuring charges - 5,626 3,789 Cash flow from operating activities 2,377 - 7,383 Balance sheet data Sharholders' equity 64,927 61,045 Capital ratioin % 29.8 34.9 Total assets 217,636 174.839 Earning/loss per sharein Euro - 0.28 0.19 Employees Half-year-end 1,857 1,811 ots Originaltext: Plaut AG Internet: www.newsaktuell.ch Contact: Beratungsgruppe Plaut Sven Kielgas Moserstrasse 33A A-5020 Salzburg Tel. +49 (0)89 96280-204 Fax +49 (0)89 96280-282 firstname.lastname@example.org Kirchhoff Consult AG Frank Schwarz Savignystraße 18 D-60325 Frankfurt Tel: +49 (0)69 7474 86 0 Fax: +49 (0)69 7474 86 20 Frank.Schwarz@kirchhoff.de