Strong growth at Palfinger

By Euan Youdale12 August 2011

A Palfinger PK 53002_SH carries out duties in Austria

A Palfinger PK 53002_SH carries out duties in Austria

Palfinger recorded impressive growth in its 2011 first half year results with a 39.3% increase in revenue, compared to the same period in 2010.

About one third of this increase resulted from acquisitions made in 2010, said the Austria-based loader crane and access equipment manufacturer, while organic growth was generated largely in Europe, although there were positive trends in all regions.

In the first six months of 2011, earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) more than doubled to €36 million (US$51 million), from €14.5 million ($21 million) achieved in the same period of 2010. The consolidated net result was more than tripled, said the company, rising from €7.3 million ($10 million) in the first half of 2010 to €22.6 million ($32 million) in the period under review.

Furthermore, revenue reached €222.7 ($317 million) in the second quarter 2011, the highest level in Palfinger's history, it claimed.

Following Palfinger's takeover of Russian crane manufacturer INMAN, which is subject to the approval of the Federal Antimonopoly Service of the Russian Federation, the group forecasts additional revenue of about €20 million ($28 million) in 2011.

"The group's performance in Europe reflects marked growth in demand. While many countries recorded exceptionally high increases in revenue on this basis, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Romania and Ukraine remained weak," said a company spokesman.

Demand was also positive in North America, added the company, particularly in the second quarter of 2011, and the upward trend in South America is expected to be reinforced thanks to upcoming investments in infrastructure.

"The markets in Asia still only account for a small share of Palfinger's business. The sharp increase in revenue generated in the region demonstrates that these markets are gaining in importance. With production sites in China, Vietnam and, since the end of 2010, also in India, Palfinger is well prepared for further growth," the spokesman continued.

The company partly owes its success to a switch to order-based procurement manufacturing and assembly, it said, enabling it to respond to order fluctuations quickly without locking up excessive capital by increasing inventories.

While the outlook for 2011 is optimistic, the massive growth rates achieved in the first half will slow down in the light of expected economic developments and the traditionally weaker summer months, said the company.

"On the basis of the current economic environment, it is estimated that organic revenue growth will be more than 20%. In addition, the areas North and South America and the business units access platforms and hookloaders are expected to make more substantial contributions to earnings."

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