euro adhoc: BENE AG
quarterly or semiannual financial statement
Bene grows further: significant sales and profit improvement in the first quarter of 2007/08.

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3-month report


•          Group sales improved by 34.4% to EUR 54.5 million
•          EBIT increased by 87.6 % to EUR 2.5 million
•          Continuing good business performance

Vienna / Waidhofen/Ybbs, June 29, 2007. In the first quarter of 2007/08, the Vienna listed Bene AG (ISIN AT00000BENE6) with its headquarters in Waidhofen/Ybbs clearly improved sales and earnings compared to the previous year´s reference period.

With a sales increase of 34.4% to EUR 54.5 million (quarter 1 - 2006/07: EUR 40.6 million), also in the first quarter of the current business year, the internationally operating specialist for office and working environments has sustainably continued its growth trend. This significant improvement was mainly resulting from a strong organic growth, but also from acquisitions such as the take over of the German TILL group.

In its home market Austria, where the Group is unchallenged market leader since many years and currently holds a market share of 27.3%, Bene further improved sales by 6.6% to EUR 16.5 million in the first three months (quarter 1 - 2006/07: EUR 15.5 million). Likewise, Bene further strengthened its market position in Germany, the largest European office furniture market and increased sales by 33.3% from EUR 10.3 million to EUR 13.7 million compared to the previous year´s period. Sales in the highly competitive UK market developed even better by 88.1% to EUR 8.8 million (quarter 1 - 2006/07: EUR 4.7 million. In Russia, a sales growth of 55.5% to EUR 6.8 million (quarter 1 - 2006/07: EUR 4.3 million) resulted from numerous international projects. Also the Bene Group´s segment "rest of the world" achieved an impressive improvement of 51.4% from EUR 5.7 million to EUR 8.7 million, to which contributed above all, the new Bene branches in Dublin and Brussels.

Earnings key figures developed even better than sales and thus the profitability of the Bene Group: In the first quarter of 2007/08, earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) increased by 87.6% to EUR 2.5 million (quarter 1 - 2006/07: EUR 1.3 million). Thus, in the first quarter of the current business year, the Bene Group clearly improved its EBIT-margin from 3.2% in the previous year´s period to 4.5%.

In the same period, the financial result improved by EUR 0.3 million to EUR 0.1 million. As a result, the EBT increased by 118.4% from EUR 1.2 million to EUR 2.6 million and the EBT-margin almost doubled from 2.9% to 4.7%.

In line with the positive business performance, working capital clearly rose during the past three months and on the reference date April 30, 2007 reached EUR 30.9 million after EUR 25.1 million on January 1, 2007. As of April 30, 2007, the equity ratio was 43.9% (January 31, 2007: 45.6%).

A considerable share of the Bene Group´s investments in the amount of EUR 2.2 million (quarter 1 - 2006/07: EUR 1.0 million) in the first quarter of 2007/08 poured into the expansion and the modernisation of the production location as well as into the adaptation and the modernisation of the distribution sites.

On the reporting date April 30, 2007, the Bene Group occupied 1,391 employees worldwide. This corresponds to a rise by 182 persons (15.1%) during the past twelve months.

After the good first quarter, the Management Board likewise positively appraises the business performance for the second quarter of 2007/08 and with three upcoming strong quarters is optimistic to significantly increase sales of the business year 2007/08 and at the same time to improve profit. In the course of its controlled expansion, the Bene Group will continue to take opportunities to widen its distribution strength through building up staff in the existing units but also through short-term acquisitions possibilities of dealers. With the massive expansion of the distribution structure in the "rest of the world" segment, besides Belgium, most of all France, the Iberian Peninsula and Turkey should develop positively.

Acquisitions for the enlargement of the own production portfolio are currently in an advanced planning phase. Definite statements thereto are expected in the course of the third respectively fourth quarter of 2007/08.

Note. Among others, this report contains statements on potential future developments, which were made on the basis of currently available information. Such statements, which reflect the current assessment of future developments by our Management, cannot be construed as guarantees for future performance and bear unforeseeable risk and uncertainty. There may be a variety of reasons for actual results and conditions to diverge from the assumptions, on which the statements were based.

The comprehensive quarterly report is available under http//

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ots Originaltext: BENE AG
Im Internet recherchierbar:

Further inquiry note:
Investor Relations
Gerald Strohmaier, MBA
Head of Finance & Investor Relations
A-3340 Waidhofen/Ybbs
Schwarzwiesenstraße 3
Phone  +43-7442-500-3372  
Fax +43-7442-500-993372

Branche: Furnishings & Furniture
ISIN:      AT00000BENE6
Index:    ATX Prime
Börsen:  Wiener Börse AG / official market

Weitere Meldungen: BENE AG

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