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Munters was impacted by the outbreak of Covid-19 in the fourth quarter with delays both in deliveries to customers as well as postponed investments by customers.
Order intake decreased -13%, currency adjusted -4%, mainly driven by lower order intake in Data Centers US on the back of a strong 2019.
Net sales was flat, currency adjusted strong growth of +8%, mainly driven by good growth in business area AirTech’s pharma sub-segment and Services as well as the swine segment in business area FoodTech.
The adjusted EBITA-margin improved to 13.3% (12.5). The improvement was driven by an improved gross margin and continued low indirect costs in business area AirTech.
Leverage (net debt/adjusted EBITDA, LTM*) decreased to 1.9x from 2.5x end of September 2020. The decrease was mainly driven by a strong cash flow development and a positive exchange rate effect of MSEK 200 on outstanding interest bearing borrowings (USD/SEK).
The measures for implementing a sharpening of the customer offering and footprint optimization were implemented according to plan. The main focus during the fourth quarter has been to prepare for execution of the measures in 2021. In the fourth quarter, only minor costs has been incurred.
The impact from the outbreak of Covid-19 was mixed with the largest impact experienced in the second and fourth quarter. All production units, except for one minor unit, have been operational throughout the year with only minor disturbances.
Order intake decreased -1%, currency adjusted +2%. The slight increase was because of a good order intake in business are FoodTech.
Net sales declined by -2%, currency adjusted +1% with a strong development in the swine segment in China for business area FoodTech. This was offset by a weak development in Mist Elimination in business area AirTech.
The adjusted EBITA-margin improved to 12.9% (12.2). The improvement was driven mainly by higher net sales and a tight cost control.
Leverage (net debt/adjusted EBITDA, LTM*) decreased to 1.9x from 2.9x at the end of December 2019. The decrease in net debt was mainly driven by a strong cash flow development and a positive exchange rate effect of MSEK 282 on outstanding interest bearing borrowings (USD/SEK).
At the end of June 2020, a total of MSEK 188 relating to the measures for implementing a sharpening of the customer offering and footprint optimization were estimated to be recorded as Items Affecting Comparability (IAC) over the coming 18 months. The measures have been implemented according to plan with focus on the exit of the non-core part of the commercial business in the US as well as the consolidation of operations in Netherlands during the second half of 2020.
Events after year-end 2020:
The Board of Directors proposes a dividend for 2020 of SEK 0.70 (0) per share.
Strong performance despite the on-going pandemic
Despite a challenging market environment in 2020 we continued the journey to transform Munters. Our focus continues to be on strengthening the base and turn Munters into a more customer centric company striving for zero impact on the planet. Our efforts resulted in growing currency adjusted net sales and profitability for the year. Efficiency improvement initiatives led to strong operating cash flow, up almost 50 per cent vs 2019, and a leverage at 1.9x down from 2.9x at year end 2019.
Stable net sales, improved profitability
Currency adjusted order intake decreased in the fourth quarter mainly as a result of lower order intake in Data Centers US on the back of a strong 2019. For the year order intake was flat with a good order intake in business area FoodTech driven by a strong swine segment in China.
Currency adjusted net sales in the fourth quarter was strong with a flat development for the full year. In the quarter we had an increase in the pharma-subsegment and Services in business area AirTech as well as the swine segment in China in business area FoodTech. For the full year the stable net sales was driven by a strong
development in the swine segment in China for business area FoodTech offset by a weak development in Mist Elimination in business area AirTech.
The adjusted EBITA-margin was strengthened in the fourth quarter as well as in the full year mainly by the ongoing efficiency improvements initiatives and net sales growth in business area FoodTech.
Entering a new phase of our growth journey
Since the start of 2020 we constantly have secured the execution of our strategy. In 2020 we achieved growth in prioritized areas, a pruning of our product portfolio and improved ways-of-working. In addition, we launched new, innovative products, for example in business area FoodTech the modular fan series Saturn that increase the functionality and reduce complexity was launched. The organization structure now has been adapted for our future ambitions with clear responsibilities and accountability.
The implementation of measures announced in July 2020 aiming at driving a sharpening of our customer offering and optimize our footprint are running according to plan. We expect all measures to be implemented throughout 2021. Going forward, we will continue to invest in product rationalization and standardization together with digitalization of our offering. Digitalization of the customer offering and our value chain is a key enabler for enhanced sustainability and growth.
Market conditions challenging
Market conditions continued to be challenging in the fourth quarter with delays both in deliveries to customers as well as postponed investments by customers. Currently, the market visibility continues to be low due to the lingering Covid-19 outbreak.
I want to thank our employees for their dedication during the year. Their fantastic capability to handle the effects of the pandemic and at the same time focus on our strategy implementation has resulted in a strong performance.
Klas Forsström, President and CEO
Today, at 9:00 the President and CEO, Klas Forsström, together with the Group Vice President and CFO, Annette Kumlien will present the report in a live webcast simultaneously with a telephone conference.
Dial-in number for the telephone conference:
SE: +46 8 56642693
UK: +44 3333009035
US: +1 8335268397
This interim report, presentation material and a link to the webcast will be available on https://www.munters.com/en/investor-relations/
Ann-Sofi Jönsson, Vice President, Investor Relations and Enterprise Risk Management
Phone: + 46 (0)730 251 005
This information is information that Munters Group AB is obliged to make public pursuant to the EU Market Abuse Regulation. The information was
submitted for publication, through the agency of the contact person set out above, at 08.00 CET on February 4, 2021.
About Munters Group
Munters is a global leader in energy efficient air treatment and climate solutions. Using innovative technologies, Munters creates the perfect climate for customers in a wide range of industries. Munters has been defining the future of air treatment since 1955. Today, around 3,500 employees carry out manufacturing and sales in more than 30 countries. Munters Group AB reported annual net sales of more than SEK 7 billion in 2020 and is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm. For more information, please visit www.munters.com.
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