Cramo returns to profit in final quarter

By Murray Pollok11 February 2011

Cramo's final quarter of 2010 showed a return to profitability, with net profits of €8.4 million compared to a net loss of €27.5 million in the final three months of 2009. Revenues for the quarter were up 26.8% to €146.4 million.

Revenues for the full year increased by 10.2% to €492.1 million, with a net loss of €2.2 million compared to a net loss of almost €40 million in 2009.

Fleet utilisation was significantly improved in the second half of the year and Cramo said full-year profitability was at a "good level" in Finland and Sweden, with its Norwegian operation returning to profit in the third quarter.

In contrast its Danish and Central/Eastern European businesses made losses during the year, although Cramo said Denmark was almost at break-even point in the final quarter.

"As we entered the year 2010, we knew it would be challenging", said Vesa Koivula, Cramo's chief executive officer, "In the first half, we continued to adjust our operations to the declining demand. The markets saw an upturn in the summer; at the same time, we renewed our strategy and targets, aligning them with the new situation."

Mr Koivula said Cramo expected construction growth in 2011 to vary widely in Europe; "The southern European countries and Ireland are facing an economic crisis, and construction outlook in these countries is poor, while the outlook is positive for the German-speaking countries, the Nordic region and most Central and Eastern European countries.

"I am confident that the timing is favourable for Cramo's recent acquisitions [primarily Theisen in Germany], since the outlook for the equipment rental market is positive in these market areas".

The company's gross capital expenditure for the year was €86.2 million, of which €33.8 million related to acquisitions. Cramo said it increased investment levels in the final quarter of the year, targeting Sweden and the portable accommodation sector. It said that it had completed rebalancing of its fleet in line with demand in the third quarter of the year.

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