TAKKT Group feels effects of economic crisis in 2009

2/18/2010, 7:30 AM (Source: GlobeNewswire)

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Takkt AG / TAKKT Group feels effects of economic crisis in 2009 processed and transmitted by Hugin AS. The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.


Even in recession double-digit operational margin



Stuttgart, Germany, 18 February 2010. In 2009, TAKKT Group experienced the
sharpest drop in turnover in the group's history. "Although the turnover decline
slowed down in the second half of the year, the global financial and economic
crisis had the anticipated major effect on our business figures. However, the
first few weeks of the current year give us reasons to be cautiously
optimistic," said TAKKT's CEO, Dr Felix A. Zimmermann.



Key facts for 2009

*   Turnover down 21.5 percent
*   Gross profit margin increased to 42.0 percent against the trend
*   EBITDA margin remains double-digit excluding one-off expenditure for FOCUS
*   Cash flow margin reaches 7.7 percent
*   FOCUS and GROWTH programmes deliver immediate results



"The preliminary figures confirm largely our expectations for the financial
year, which we announced in October. Looking back at the three possible
scenarios projected at the beginning of 2009, the actual fall in turnover
corresponded to the worst-case scenario. It is all the more favourable that we
performed better with regards to the operational margin predicted for this
situation," Zimmermann commented. "We quickly reacted to the difficult economic
conditions with our FOCUS and GROWTH programmes." The TAKKT Management Board is
pleased with the implementation of the projects to date, which are geared
towards both structural and capacity-related adjustments (FOCUS) and growth
initiatives (GROWTH).



In the financial year 2009, TAKKT Group generated turnover of EUR 731.5 (932.1)
million. This corresponds to a 21.5 percent decline on the previous year.
However, this development was cushioned by the acquisition of Central Restaurant
Products (Central) and the stronger US dollar compared to the average of 2008.
Adjusted for these effects, the decrease came to 26.2 percent.



The significant drop in turnover had a considerable impact on TAKKT Group's
result. The gross profit margin, however, remained unaffected, recording
anti-cyclical growth to 42.0 (41.4) percent. Adjusted for the acquisition of the
restaurant supplier Central, it came to 42.4 percent. This increase was
primarily attributable to improved purchasing conditions.



EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) was at EUR
68.7 (133.1) million. As a result of the crisis-related lower capacity
utilisation, the EBITDA margin fell to 9.4 (14.3) percent. Adjusted for one-off
expenditure totalling EUR 5.2 million in connection with the FOCUS programme,
the Group posted an EBITDA margin of 10.1 percent.



"Despite the economic turbulence, we still succeeded in keeping a double-digit
adjusted EBITDA margin, even during the 2009 crisis. This is further testimony
to our flexible business model, which allows us to adjust important cost
positions to the economic situation. In addition, we reacted quickly to the
unfavourable conditions, thereby laying the foundations for our EBITDA margin to
return to the target corridor of 12 to 15 percent," said Dr Florian Funck, CFO.



Cash flow fell to EUR 56.1 (97.1) million. Although the cash flow margin was
well below the previous year's record figure of 10.4 percent, it was
nevertheless good at 7.7 percent. As TAKKT's business model generates strong
cash flow, it enables the company to work towards future growth even in a
difficult economic environment by acquisitions and expansion.



Decline in business figures slowed down in the fourth quarter

While turnover dropped at an increasing rate until midyear, the situation eased
up in the third and fourth quarters of 2009. Overall, turnover decreased by
18.5 percent to EUR 186.6 (228.9) million in the fourth quarter. Adjusted for
currency effects and excluding the acquisition, the decline was 19.2 percent.



As a result, EBITDA also decreased to EUR 13.5 (24.9) million in the fourth
quarter, while the margin was at 7.2 (10.9) percent. Due to the changed
catalogue accounting according to IAS 38.69, the fourth quarter profitability is
the lowest over the course of the year. Profit before tax dropped to EUR 6.5
(18.9) million.



All divisions affected by lower turnover in 2009

None of TAKKT's three divisions could escape the effects of the global economic
crisis in 2009.



KAISER + KRAFT EUROPA remains the Group's largest and most profitable division,
despite the major downturn. Turnover fell from EUR 539.3 million in the previous
year to EUR 379.2 million (minus 29.7 percent). At 14.9 (20.4) percent, the
EBITDA margin was at the upper end of TAKKT Group's long-term target corridor.



Topdeq, the specialist for high-quality office equipment, generated turnover of
EUR 57.3 (82.7) million - 30.7 percent less than in the previous year. This
sharp decline was largely due to the withdrawal from the US market as well as
the difficult economic environment. The division's EBITDA margin slipped below
zero to minus 2.6 (7.4) percent. By contrast, the Topdeq Group's European
activities posted a positive operational result.



The three groups in the K + K America division were affected to different
degrees by the economic crisis: the Specialties Group (consisting of the Hubert
companies and Central) developed best within this division and even closed the
fourth quarter with a slight acquisition-adjusted increase in turnover. The
Office Equipment Group (NBF Group) also posted a gentler fall in turnover than
the Group. This group benefited in particular from its business dealings with
non-profit organisations and government agencies. The Plant Equipment Group
(PEG), which focuses on customers in the manufacturing industry, suffered the
sharpest decrease in turnover. All in all, K + K America generated USD 411.2
(454.9) million in turnover - a year-on-year drop of 9.6 percent. Adjusted for
the acquisition of Central, the turnover decline came to 20.0 percent. In the
2009 reporting year, the EBITDA margin was 7.1 (8.2) percent. As its operational
profitability was above the Group average, the acquisition of Central had a
positive effect on earnings following the company's consolidation in April.
Adjusted for this acquisition, the EBITDA margin was 6.5 percent.



Outlook cautiously optimistic

Dr Felix A. Zimmermann summed up the prospects for the current year as follows:
"Following a very difficult year in 2009, we are starting to see light at the
end of the tunnel. Although we still expect moderate rates of decline in the
first quarter of 2010, the economic indicators give us reason to be cautiously
optimistic. We anticipate positive turnover growth again from the middle of the
year on at the latest. However, there remains a risk of further setbacks on the
financial markets and in the economy. Due to the structural measures we have
initiated and given a slight recovery in demand, we expect TAKKT Group's EBITDA
margin to get much closer to the long-term target corridor of 12 to 15 percent.
However, it will not yet reach this range in 2010. As a consequence of the FOCUS
programme, we expect to see positive effects on the result of at least EUR 3
million per year."



Events after the end of the financial year 2009

Group structure adjusted

TAKKT Group's organisational structure has been adjusted as of 01 January 2010.
There are now two divisions within the TAKKT Group - TAKKT EUROPE and TAKKT
AMERICA. TAKKT EUROPE comprises two groups: the Business Equipment Group (BEG),
consisting of the companies which previously belonged to the KAISER + KRAFT
EUROPA division, and the Office Equipment Group (OEG), comprising the Topdeq
companies. TAKKT AMERICA (previously K + K America) will still be made up of the
Plant Equipment Group (PEG), the Specialties Group (SPG) and the Office
Equipment Group (OEG).



Conference call

We invite you to directly address the Management Board with your questions. We
will be hosting a conference call for this purpose at 15:00 (CET) on 18 February
2010, during which we will be open to questions. To take part, please dial the
following number: +49 711 9659-9628 (access code: 779134#).



Press conference on financial statements

Further details on the financial statements 2009 and anticipated future business
developments will be published at the press conference on the annual financial
statements, which will be held in Stuttgart on 23 March 2010.



Short profile of TAKKT AG

TAKKT is the leading B2B mail order specialist for business equipment in Europe
and North America. The Group is represented with its brands in more than 25
countries. The product range of the TAKKT subsidiaries comprises over 160,000
items from the areas business and warehouse equipment, classical and
design-oriented office furniture and accessories, as well as sales promotion
items for retailers, the food service industry and the hotel market.



The TAKKT Group employs some 1,800 staff, has 3 million customers worldwide and
distributes about 55 million catalogues and mailings per year.



TAKKT AG is listed on the SDAX and was admitted to Deutsche Boerse's Prime
Standard on 01 January 2003.



Contact:

Dr Felix A. Zimmermann, CEO Tel. +49 711 3465-8201

Dr Florian Funck, CFO Tel. +49 711 3465-8207



Email: investor@takkt.de


Preliminary IFRS figures for TAKKT Group for the financial year 2009

in EUR million

+---------------+-------+--------+-----------+----------+-----------+----------+
| | | | | | |Change in |
|    |Q4 2009|Q4 2008*|Change in %|Q 1-4 2009|Q 1-4 2008*|% |
+---------------+-------+--------+-----------+----------+-----------+----------+
|TAKKT Group |186.6 |228.9 |-18.5 |731.5 |932.1 |-21.5 |
|turnover | | | | | | |
| | | | | | | |
|Organic growth |  |  |-19.2 |  |  |-26.2 |
| | | | | | | |
| KAISER +|103.2 |131.2 |-21.3 |379.2 |539.3 |-29.7 |
|  KRAFT EUROPA | | | | | | |
| | | | | | | |
| Topdeq | | | | | | |
| |14.0 |20.1 |-30.3 |57.3 |82.7 |-30.7 |
|    | | | | | | |
| | | | | | | |
| K + K America| | | | | | |
| (EUR) |69.6 |77.8 |-10.5 |295.6 |310.9 |-4.9 |
| | | | | | | |
|    | | | | | | |
| | | | | | | |
| K + K America|103.0 |100.6 |2.4 |411.2 |454.9 |-9.6 |
|  (USD) | | | | | | |
+---------------+-------+--------+-----------+----------+-----------+----------+
|EBITDA |13.5 |24.9 |-45.8 |68.7 |133.1 |-48.4 |
| | | | | | | |
|EBITDA margin |7.2 |10.9 |  |9.4 |14.3 |  |
+---------------+-------+--------+-----------+----------+-----------+----------+
|EBIT |8.4 |20.6 |-59.2 |49.4 |117.3 |-57.9 |
| | | | | | | |
|EBIT margin |4.5 |9.0 |  |6.8 |12.6 |  |
+---------------+-------+--------+-----------+----------+-----------+----------+
|Profit before|6.5 |18.9 |-65.6 |42.4 |111.0 |-61.8 |
|tax | | | | | | |
| | | | | | | |
|Pre-tax profit|3.5 |8.3 |  |5.8 |11.9 |  |
|margin | | | | | | |
+---------------+-------+--------+-----------+----------+-----------+----------+
|Cash flow |15.4 |19.1 |-19.4 |56.1 |97.1 |-42.2 |
| | | | | | | |
|Cash flow|8.3 |8.3 |  |7.7 |10.4 |  |
|margin | | | | | | |
+---------------+-------+--------+-----------+----------+-----------+----------+

* In order to
make the prior
year figures
comparable with
those of the
current year,
the figures for

the financial
year 2008 have
been restated
according to
the new IFRS
standard
regarding
catalogue cost
accounting
effective from
01 January
2009.


[HUG#1385705]



--- End of Message ---

Takkt AG
Neckartaltstr. 155 Stuttgart null

ISIN: DE0007446007;

Press Release as PDF: http://hugin.info/131631/R/1385705/344376.pdf
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