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freenet AG

EANS-News: freenet AG
freenet AG publishes dividend proposal for 2012 as part of its new dividend policy

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  Corporate news transmitted by euro adhoc. The issuer/originator is solely
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annual report/Financial Figures/Balance Sheet

Büdelsdorf (euro adhoc) - freenet AG publishes dividend proposal for 2012 as
part of its new dividend policy

* Executive and Supervisory Board to propose a dividend of 1.35 euros per share
for the 2012 financial year (prior year: 1.20 euros) to the Annual General
Meeting
* Payout ratio increases to 66 percent of free cash flow* in the amount of 260
million euros (prior year: 241 million euros)
* Recently published preliminary results are confirmed

Büdelsdorf, 25 March 2013 - freenet AG today published its full Group financial
statements for the 2012 financial year and confirmed the preliminary results
announced in late February.

Following today's adoption of freenet AG's financial statements as at 31
December 2012 and approval of the Group financial statements as at 31 December
2012 by the Supervisory Board, the Executive Board and Supervisory Board of
freenet AG will propose to the AGM a dividend payout in the amount of 1.35 euros
per eligible share.

The preliminary results reported at the end of February 2013 were confirmed in
full. Accordingly, freenet increased its Group net income by 20.3 percent to
173.2 million euros (prior year: 144.0 million euros), the best result in the
company's history. At the same time, freenet paid down its net debt by 14.8
percent to 451.3 million euros (prior year: 529.4 million euros), reducing its
debt factor - as the ratio of net debt to EBITDA - to 1.26 (prior year: 1.57).

With Group EBITDA (earnings before depreciation and amortization, interest and
taxes) of 357.8 million euros (prior year: 337.4 million euros) and free cash
flow of 260.0 million euros (prior year: 241.0 million euros), freenet AG
significantly exceeded its forecast, which in November 2012 was increased to
355.0 million euros for Group EBITDA and 255.0 million euros for free cash flow.

The dividend payout now proposed by the Executive and Supervisory Board for the
past business year represents an increase of 19.2 million euros to 172.9 million
euros (prior year: 153.7 million euros). Measured against free cash flow, the
payout ratio is approximately 66 percent. Since dividend payments first began in
July 2010, the average annual growth rate (CAGR) of the dividend payout is now
at 189 percent. "This development documents the sustainability of our business
model," explains freenet AG CEO Christoph Vilanek. "Given our clear strategic
positioning as a digital lifestyle provider in a dynamic market environment, we
see continued growth potential for the future."

"Our financial strategy is designed so that, based on our cash flow strength, it
not only finances the company's strategic objectives, but also pays an
attractive dividend for shareholders and offers our lenders consistently strong
investment terms," adds Joachim Preisig, Chief Financial Officer of freenet AG.

At the end of February, upon announcing the preliminary results, the Executive
Board had retroactively adjusted its dividend policy from the 2012 financial
year and lifted the bandwidth for dividend payouts to 50 to 75 percent of free
cash flow (previously: 40 to 60 percent). At the same time, the target range for
the debt factor was adjusted to 1.0 to 2.5 (previously: 1.5 to 2.5) for an
income-oriented optimisation of the capital structure.

The Annual General Meeting is scheduled for 23 May 2013 in Hamburg.

The complete annual report for the 2012 financial year will be available for
download shortly from the freenet AG website at
http://www.freenet-group.de/investor/index.html.
***************************************
*Free cash flow is defined as cash flow from operating activities, minus
investments in property, plant and equipment and intangible assets, plus
proceeds from the disposal of property, plant and equipment and intangible
assets.


Further inquiry note:
freenet AG
Investor Relations
Tel.: +49 (0)40 513 06-778
E-Mail: ir@freenet.ag

end of announcement                               euro adhoc 
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company:     freenet AG
             Hollerstraße 126
             D-24782 Büdelsdorf
phone:       +49 (0)4331 691000
mail:     ir@freenet.ag
WWW:      http://www.freenet-group.de
sector:      Telecommunications
ISIN:        DE000A0Z2ZZ5
indexes:     Midcap Market Index, TecDAX, CDAX, HDAX, Prime All Share,
             Technology All Share
stockmarkets: free trade: Hannover, Berlin, München, Hamburg, Düsseldorf,
             Stuttgart, regulated dealing/prime standard: Frankfurt 
language:   English
 



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