SW Umwelttechnik Stoiser & Wolschner AG

euro adhoc: SW Umwelttechnik Stoiser & Wolschner AG
Quarterly or Semiannual Financial Statements
SW Umwelttechnik announces results for first three quarters of 2004

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* Order backlog up by43% * Temporary delays to Hungarian projects * Increased Profit on ordinary activities (POA) * Dividend to be paid for 2004

The trends witnessed in the first half of 2004 — a slight reduction in revenue accompanied by an improvement in the after-tax result — continued in the third quarter. The company’s Engineering sector recorded an 8% decline in Hungarian revenue over the first three quarters, from €55.3 million (m) to €51.0m, due to hold-ups in wastewater treatment plant and sewerage projects. These delays have resulted from the public spending curbs introduced by the Hungarian government. Provided that weather conditions are favourable the revenue shortfall should be made up in the fourth quarter, leading to a slight increase in total revenue for the year.

There has been little change in the geographical breakdown of revenue since 2003. Despite the sales growth registered by the South Budapest site the overall revenue contribution of the Hungarian market was constant at 70%. The revenue contribution of the Austrian market rose slightly, from 22% to 25%, while that of other EU member states and third countries contracted from 8% to 5% due to the expected fall-off in exports to Northern Italy.

The revenue breakdown by business sectors was constant in the same period of time of 2003, whereas in the revenue share of the Project Business the temporary delays to Hungarian projects in waste water treatment plant and sewerage projects, was compensated by the positive performance of the South Budapest site. The proportion of total revenue contributed by the Project Business sector increased from 38% in 2003 to 39%, that of the Water Conservation sector shrank from 31% to 30%, and the Infrastructure sector was constant at 31%.

Earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) slipped to €0.8m from €1.9m in the same period of 2003 due to the impact of project delays on the Engineering sector and sharp increases in steel prices. Steel prices climbed by an average of 40%, resulting in an additional cost burden of €1.3m, most of which could not be passed on to customers. In consequence EBITDA declined to €3.6m from €4.8m in the like period of 2003.

The financial result was at breakeven as of 30 September 2004, compared with finance cost of €2.0m a year earlier. This improvement resulted from exchange gains due to the refinancing of the Hungarian operations on a euro basis, following exchange losses in 2003.

This meant that the company swung into a profit on ordinary activities (POA) of €0.8m for the first three quarters, following a loss of €0.1m for the like period of 2003.

The headcount was adjusted to the revenue trend, and was 7% down to 724 employees as at the end of the period (2003: 779).

Capital expenditure

Some €2m of the €2.5m in capital expenditure planned for 2004 as a whole was spent in the first three quarters. The lion’s share of investment — some 70% — went to the Hungarian operations, most of it being channelled to the South Budapest factory. Investment in Austria is largely being devoted to the development of new products.

Outlook

In the light of the EUR 30m surge in order backlog (a 43% year-on-year increase) and the fall in finance cost, management anticipates an improvement in profit after tax for 2004 as a whole, despite the drop in EBIT.

Due to the expected increase in earnings per share plans to pay a dividend of €0.20 per share, as announced in the first half, remain in place.

SW Umwelttechnik will continue to adhere strictly to its strategy. Management attention will focus on the following developments:

* The products of the Infrastructure sector are set to remain in strong demand from commercial and industrial customers in Hungary, and the company intends to build out its strong position in this market. * The Project Business sector is expected to put in a strong fourth quarter in Hungary, due to upcoming wastewater treatment plant and sewerage projects. * So far this year the company has won design and build contracts for seven Austrian biogas plants with a combined capacity of 6,000 kW. * The Water Conservation sector is likely to face difficult trading conditions in Austria for some time to come. This business is to be strengthened by developing new products such as surface water protection and tunnel water purification systems. * The company will step up development of the Croatian, Romanian, Slovakian and Slovenian markets, which will be supplied from its 11 existing production sites.

end of announcement                                euro adhoc 03.11.2004 07:00:00
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Further inquiry note: DI Heinz Wolschner, Vorstand der SW Umwelttechnik Tel.: 0043/463/32109-0, Fax: 0043/463/37667 MMag. Christian Riel, Finanzen/Investor Relations Tel.: 0043/664/4337105, Fax: 0043/1/3688686, mailto:christian.riel@sw-umwelttechnik.at Website: http://www.sw-umwelttechnik.at

Branche: Technology
ISIN:      AT0000808209
WKN:        080820
Index:    WBI, ATX Prime, ViDX
Börsen:  Berliner Wertpapierbörse / free trade
              Baden-Württembergische Wertpapierbörse / free trade
              Börse Düsseldorf / free trade
              Wiener Börse AG / official dealing



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