In its first quarter as a standalone crane business since the separation in January, crane manufacturer Manitowoc Company reported sales of US$427.4 million for the first quarter of 2016. It was up five percent on the $406.7 million for same period of 2015.
The increase was largely attributed to strength in the tower crane market and business for the Potain brand. Operating earnings were $9.5 million, as opposed to a loss of $7.3 million a year earlier. The 2.2 % operating margin for the quarter compares favourably with the negative figure of -1.8 % for Q1 2015.
Commenting on the results, Barry Pennypacker, Manitowoc president and chief executive officer, said, “We made great strides in the first quarter transitioning to a standalone crane business. We’ve begun to establish a new culture based on The Manitowoc Way, focused on driving innovation and velocity throughout all of our business processes. In the first quarter we experienced continued momentum in our tower business, fuelled by residential and non-residential construction. As anticipated, demand for mobiles remains soft. Our full-year outlook remains unchanged.”
For the first quarter of 2016 the company reported a net loss of $204.0 million versus a net loss of $8.4 million a year earlier. “First quarter 2016 earnings were impacted by costs associated with early extinguishment of debt, restructuring and one-time tax items,” the company said.
Orders placed in the first quarter were worth $417 million, down $7 million on the $424 million of the previous quarter to the end of 2015. Restructuring expense in the first quarter was $4 million, mainly for workforce reduction in the USA. Total savings from the plan, however, are forecast to be $20 million by the end of the year, with another $18 million expected from other restructuring activities.
In outlook for 2016 Manitowoc forecasts flat revenue and an operating margin around 4 %.