KUKA expects further growth after setting new records in 2012
March 26, 2013
- Consolidated orders received up 21.7 percent to EUR 1.89 billion
- Sales revenues also up sharply: +21.1 percent to EUR 1.74 billion
- At EUR 109.8 million, EBIT surpasses EUR 100 million threshold for the first time; EBIT margin improves to 6.3 percent
- Guidance fully met for 2012
- Board recommends dividend of 20 euro cents per share for fiscal 2012
BUSINESS PERFORMANCE IN FISCAL 2012
The key 2012 business numbers are as follows:
KUKA Group's sales revenues for the fiscal year just ended rose nearly in parallel with orders received, coming in at EUR 1,739.2 million overall, 21.1 percent higher than 2011's EUR 1,435.6 million. The Robotics division reported sales revenues of EUR 742.6 million, an increase of 20.5 percent from the EUR 616.3 million generated in 2011. Systems' sales were up 20.5 percent to EUR 1,025.3 million from EUR 850.7 million in 2011. The book-to-bill ratio remained above 1, coming in at 1.09. As a result, order backlog rose, which ensures high capacity utilization for 2013.
KUKA Group's earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) for the fiscal year just ended grew faster than sales revenues. For the first time, KUKA Group's EBIT surpassed the EUR 100 million threshold. The company's overall EBIT came in at EUR 109.8 million, which compares to EUR 72.6 million in 2011. EBIT margin also improved, growing from 5.1 percent in 2011 to 6.3 percent in 2012. Both divisions contributed to this very satisfactory growth. Robotics generated earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) of EUR 80.2 million thanks to the higher manufacturing volume, higher revenues from service and a higher share of sales of the new generation of KR QUANTEC/KR C4 robots. In 2011, the division earned EUR 51.0 million. EBIT margin for fiscal 2012 was at or above the 10 percent target in every quarter and came in at 10.8 percent overall. Driven by better process and project risk management, Systems' EBIT rose from EUR 33.7 million in 2011 to EUR 47.7 million in 2012. The division's overall EBIT margin was up accordingly and reached 4.7 percent. In the third and fourth quarters, the division reached its target margin of 5.0 percent.
KUKA Group's financing is secured primarily by a Syndicated Senior Facilities Agreement in the amount of EUR 200 million and a corporate bond issued in November 2010 that is valued at EUR 202 million. To optimize its financing structure and to lock in the attractive current interest rate, KUKA Group placed a convertible bond in February 2013 worth EUR 58.8 million and maturing in 2018.
Net income of EUR 55.6 million, up from EUR 29.9 million in 2011, had a particularly positive impact on equity. Overall, equity was up EUR 45.1 million to EUR 297.5 million as of December 31, 2012. Accordingly, the equity ratio; that is, the ratio of equity to total assets, was up 2.8 percent, from 23.4 percent to 26.2 percent.
The sharp increase in business volume made it necessary for the divisions to hire additional staff. Overall, the workforce, including apprentices and work-study students, expanded by 10.2 percent to 7,264, which compares to 6,589 on December 31, 2011. Of the 675 new full-time employees hired by KUKA Group, the Robotics division accounted for 427 and the System division for 259. On a regional basis, most of the Robotics division's new staff was hired in Augsburg and at the Hungarian control cubicle assembly facility, as well as generally to expand its international business. The number of contract workers went from 1,078 as of December 31, 2011 to 1,408 on December 31, 2011.
The company signed a strategic joint development agreement with Daimler at the end of 2012. The two companies aim to jointly develop human-robot safety concepts for lightweight robots used in industrial applications. KUKA lightweight robots have already helped assemble more than 500,000 rear axle differentials at the Daimler factory in Untertürkheim since 2009.
Based on stable general conditions, a high order backlog and excellent business growth visibility, KUKA Group expects sales during fiscal 2013 to reach about EUR 1.8 billion, up from EUR 1.74 billion in 2012. Base on the sales growth forecast, EBIT margin should come in at around 6.5 percent, up from 6.3 percent in 2012.