Wesel, August 8, 2007
ALTANA posts robust growth in the first six months of 2007
- Sales: +7 percent
- Earnings (EBITDA): +22 percent
- Optimistic outlook is updated
The specialty chemicals company ALTANA AG substantially increased sales and earnings in the first six months of 2007 compared to the previous year. Sales increased by 7%, rising from €659.0 million to €705.7 million. Adjusted for negative exchange rate effects of 3% as well as slightly positive acquisition effects, the operating sales growth rate was 9%. The growth in sales was particularly strong in Europe (+ 10%) and Asia (+ 8%). Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) grew by 22% from €103.1 million to €125.2 million, based on double-digit earnings increases in all divisions. The EBITDA margin was 17.7%; despite additional costs due to the dual holding structure with the headquarters in Wesel and Bad Homburg, which was maintained until the middle of the year. Income before taxes (EBT) reflects the extraordinary interest income of €55.3 million from the investment of the purchase price for ALTANA Pharma realized until the distribution of the dividend in May. EBT for the first half of 2007 totaled €138.6 million; this corresponds to an increase of €75.9 million on the comparable prior-year figure.
All divisions are developing positively
All four divisions contributed to the substantial growth of ALTANA.
Sales in the largest division, BYK Additives & Instruments, climbed from €214.1 million in the prior year to €229.6 million; this translates into an increase of 7%. EBITDA was up from €63.9 million to €70.5 million, an increase of 10%.
ECKART Effect Pigments posted an increase of 8%, with sales rising from €165.7 million to €178.9 million. EBITDA grew significantly from €34.1 million to €43.9 million, and was therefore up by 29%.
Sales of ELANTAS Electrical Insulation grew by 9%, up from €167.7 million to €182.9 million. EBITDA amounted to €28.2 million, and was therefore up by €5.7 million or 27% compared to the first half of 2006 (€22.5 million).
ACTEGA Coatings & Sealants improved sales by 2%, generating €114.3 million (prior year: €111.5 million). EBITDA climbed from €11.5 million to €12.9 million, corresponding to an increase of 12%.
“In the first half-year of our new group structure as a pure specialty chemicals company we have demonstrated a very satisfying development and were able to increase sales and earnings substantially,“ stated Dr. Matthias Wolfgruber, CEO of ALTANA AG. “We have thus successfully lived up to the confidence placed in us by the capital markets and the general public after the new start of ALTANA and we are well positioned to continue our path of profitable growth into the future.“
Positive outlook for the business year 2007
For the current business year, ALTANA expects an ongoing positive business environment and further increase in demand for specialty chemicals products. Raw materials prices should remain at a high level. Due to the recent currency developments we have adjusted our exchange rate expectations: the presumed U.S. Dollar rate is now 1.35 per Euro on an annual average.
Against this background and on the basis of the positive sales and earnings development of the first six months, we update our previously given outlook as follows: For 2007, we expect a mid-range single-digit growth in sales to a level of €1.35 to €1.39 billion and a strong double-digit growth in EBITDA to a level between €220 and €240 million. Effects from the intended acquisition of Wolstenholme have not been considered, as the closing of the transaction is subject to approval by the British antitrust authorities. Income before taxes (EBT) is positively influenced by the extraordinary interest income of €55.3 million from the investment of the proceeds from the sale of ALTANA Pharma.
Key Figures, H1 2007
January to June 2007
January to June 20061
in € million
in € million
Earnings before taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA)
Operating income (EBIT)
Income before taxes (EBT)
Net income (EAT)1
Earnings per share (EPS)1 in €
Research and development expenses
Capital expenditure on intangible assets and property, plant and equipment
Headcount (June 30)
1 The figures relateto the continuing operations.
A conference call for analysts will take place today, August 8, 2007, at 3:00 p.m. (local time, CEST). More information on the relevant audio webcast, this press release and the interim financial report is available at www.altana.com.