Cramo forecasts recovery in second half of 2010

By Murray Pollok03 November 2009

Cramo said it was possible that the demand for rental equipment could continue to weaken until the middle of 2010, with a recovery starting in the second half of the year, although it said any forecasts were difficult to make.

The company's sales for the three months to 30 September were down 26.1% to €115.1 million (a 22.0% decline in local currencies) and EBIT (earnings before interest, tax and amortisation) was € 9.6 million (compared to €34.2 for the same period in 2008).

Third quarter sales were higher than the second quarter in most markets, and most businesses remain profitable, although Cramo said profitability at its Danish and Eastern European businesses was "still unsatisfactory".

"The demand for equipment rental services might continue to decrease in many markets in the first half of 2010", said the company, "Recent reports on signs of early recovery and increasing residential construction, support a forecast according to which the demand for equipment rental services might see an upswing in the second half of 2010. However, there are still significant uncertainties associated with 2010 forecasts."

Cramo said equipment utilization had fallen in almost all markets and price competition was becoming particularly tough in Denmark and Central and Eastern Europe.

Sales in the third quarter fell in all markets, as follows: Finland (down 30%), Sweden (-22%), Norway (-14%), Denmark (-18%) and Central and Eastern Europe (-50%).

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