Ad-hoc: Forecast for the Year Raised / AC-Service Posts Strong Growth
Stuttgart, 14 November 2007 – Under the leadership of its changed board of directors, AC-Service again picked up added speed in this 3rd quarter. The fundamental realignment of its strategy of becoming a full-scale SAP service provider is generating additional growth drive. As reported in the 9-month financial statements that were completed and published today, AC-Service posted sales of EUR 64.2 million (prior-year period: EUR 51.0 million). This 26% increase in revenues (21 percentage points being attributable to organic growth) exceeded the board's expectations and stems predominantly from the business divisions Managed IT Services (+32%) and SAP Solutions (+28%). Once again the other business divisions also reported increased sales. An extremely impressive rise in earnings was achieved despite continued major investments in personnel and infrastructures. The 9-month EBITA more than doubled over that of the same period a year ago and rose from EUR 1.4 to 3.1 million, while the 9-month EBIT improved from EUR 0.7 to 2.3 million.
The 3rd quarter finished with sales rising 24% to EUR 22.2 million (prior-year quarter: EUR 17.9 million). The 3rd quarter EBITA was EUR 1.2 million (prior-year quarter: EUR 1.0 million) and the EBIT was EUR 1.0 million (prior-year quarter: EUR 0.7 million). Despite pre-tax earnings for the 3rd quarter increasing to EUR 0.9 million (plus 59%), the quarterly earnings per share were minus 5 euro cents (prior-year quarter: 0 euro cents). This is the consequence of one-time tax charges from value adjustments in the amount of EUR 0.5 million in connection with Germany's 2008 corporate tax reform. AC-Service posted a profit jump from minus 26 euro cents (9 months of 2006) to plus 12 euro cents (9 months of 2007) in its 9-month earnings per share. The 9-month average staffing strength in full-time equivalents was 470 (prior-year period: 415) and the number of individuals employed as at the 30 September reporting date was 504 (30 September 2006: 435).
AC-Service intends to continue progressing with its growth strategy in the 4th quarter and to further enhance the good standing it enjoys in the marketplace, particularly among mid-sized machine-making, supplier operations and project-services companies. This is why the board has raised the sales and earnings projections for the full 2007 year, which were announced as being in a range of from EUR 77 to 79 million (sales) and EUR 2.3 to 2.7 million (EBITA) in the 2006 Annual Report published in March 2007. The adjusted projections for sales are now put in a range of from approximately EUR 83 to 85 million, with earnings (EBITA) expected to range from about EUR 3.6 to 4.0 million.