Given the better-than-expected business performance of Nordex SE in the first quarter of 2014, the company’s Management Board has now raised its full-year sales and EBIT guidance.
The Nordex Group recorded further double digit growth in the first quarter of the current year. Sales increased by 64 percent to a record EUR 424.5 million (Q1/2013: EUR 259.0 million). At 71 percent, the EMEA region (Europe and Africa) accounted for the bulk of business. However, sales in the Americas and Asia developed exceptionally well, rising to EUR 124.1 million (Q1/2013: EUR 14.5 million). Nordex’s service business also climbed to EUR 34.3 million in the first quarter (Q1/2013: EUR 30.8 million).
Consolidated operating earnings rose to EUR 21.1 million (Q1/2013: negative operating earnings of EUR 0.7 million), due in particular to cost-cutting measures and improved capacity utilisation. A further contributing factor was the execution of more profitable orders. This is also reflected in the higher gross margin of 24.0 percent (Q1/2013: 21.3%). Consolidated net profit amounted to EUR 9.1 million (Q1/2013: consolidated net loss of EUR 8.4 million).
The Nordex Group’s balance sheet was even stronger as of 31 March 2014 with an equity ratio of 32.0 percent (31 December 2013: 30.9%) and an increase of EUR 11.7 million to EUR 344.7 million (31 December 2013: EUR 333.0 million) in cash and cash equivalents. As a result, net liquidity rose to EUR 151.7 million thanks to high prepayments and substantially improved cash management. The working capital ratio reached a level of only 1.0% (31 December 2013: 2.2%). In the first quarter, Nordex generated free cash flow of EUR 14.8 million (Q1/2013: negative free cash flow of EUR 77.3 million).
Order intake rose by 71 percent to EUR 562 million (Q1/2013: EUR 328 million) in the first quarter, driven by successful marketing in Europe. What is more, the customer response to Nordex’s recent product releases remained positive. This applies to the N117/2400, which remains the top-selling turbine, accounting for 34 percent of sales. The Generation Delta, which was launched last year, contributed 22 percent of orders. The positive book-to-bill ratio of 1.32 reflects a further increase in firmly financed orders of EUR 1.4 billion (Q1/2013: EUR 1.1 billion).
With business performance so far exceeding expectations and given the improved forward visibility over the next few quarters, Nordex SE’s Management Board has raised its full-year guidance for 2014. Accordingly, the Board is now looking for sales of EUR 1.5 – 1.6 billion (previous guidance EUR 1.4 – 1.5 billion). The EBIT margin is expected to reach 4.0 – 5.0 percent (previous guidance 3.5 – 4.5 percent). In addition, Nordex will announce its medium-term forecasts in the next few months.