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Vestum’s Interim Report January – March 2022: High growth with solid cash flows

Highlights of the period January – March 2022

  • Net sales amounted to SEK 1,269 (-) million
  • Adjusted EBITA amounted to SEK 85 (-0) million, corresponding to an adjusted EBITA margin of 6,7% (- %)
  • EBITA amounted to SEK 79 (-0) million, corresponding to an EBITA margin of 6.2% (- %)
  • EBITA per share before and after dilution amounted to SEK 0.22 (0.01)
  • Operating profit (EBIT) amounted to SEK 15 (0) million
  • Cash flow from operating activities amounted to SEK 104 (2) million
  • Operating cash flow amounted to SEK 199 (6) million, corresponding to a cash conversion of 154% (- %)
  • Vestum has completed 10 acquisitions during the first quarter
  • Strengthened position internationally through acquisitions in Norway and Denmark
  • Vestum has entered into a new agreement regarding a multicurrency revolving credit facility amounting to SEK 600 million with an accordion option of up to SEK 400 million

Summarising comments by CEO Conny Ryk
Vestum continues to deliver high growth. For the entire Group, rolling 12 months, pro forma sales amount to SEK 5,941 million and pro forma EBITA to SEK 639 million, corresponding to a pro forma EBITA margin of 10.8%. The organic growth for all companies completed up to and including the first quarter of 2022 was 12.4% on an annual basis compared to the same period last year. The process of changing the listing to Nasdaq Stockholm, as previously announced, has continued according to plan.

We have during the quarter built an organisation that is shaped to manage a high acquisition pace and further develop the portfolio companies. These increased costs have impacted profits, while the first quarter is also generally the weakest quarter financially for Vestum's subsidiaries due to seasonality. Our companies are exposed to the construction services and infrastructure industries, where the seasonal pattern is affected by weather conditions and the number of working days. The first half of the quarter was also clearly affected by pandemic restrictions and other side effects. Russia's invasion of Ukraine has led to supply chain disruptions and higher raw material prices. Vestum has not identified any direct exposure to the Russian or Ukrainian markets.

Operating cash flow totalled SEK 199 million, which corresponds to a cash conversion of 154%.

The internationalisation journey continued during the first quarter as we entered into agreements to make three acquisitions outside Sweden, of which two in Norway and one in Denmark. At the end of the quarter, 22% of the Group's sales are outside Sweden. The companies are located in Norway, Denmark, Finland, the United Kingdom and Germany. The acquisition model is the same regardless of geography. We also opened an office in Oslo during the quarter, and key people were recruited in functions such as M&A, Finance, HR and Operations.

Our companies are experiencing solid demand with stable underlying growth. At the same time, we are experiencing continued challenges at the supplier level with increased raw material prices which is expected to also have some impact on margins in the second quarter, mainly in our operations outside Sweden.

Overall, Vestum is today a well-diversified Group consisting of niche companies in six countries with exposure to the construction services and infrastructure industries within the three segments Water, Services and Infrastructure. During the first quarter, we delivered organic growth of 12.4% on an annual basis and a rolling 12-months pro forma EBITA margin of 10.8%. With solid international exposure, strong underlying demand in our markets and a decentralised business model, we look forward to continuing to deliver profitable growth, both organically and through acquisitions.

Source: MFN
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