This is a summary of the fourth quarter 2012 report and full year 2012 summary published today. The complete fourth quarter 2012 report and full year summary with tables is available at http://investor.cavotec.com/results.cfm. Investors should not rely on summaries only, but should review the complete reports with tables.
(1)Operating result adjusted for special items
A comment from the CEO
Cavotec continued to deliver consistent results through the past quarter, building on the positive trend set over the preceding 2012 quarters. The cornerstone for this strong performance has been the commitment throughout the whole Group to make 2012 a record year for Cavotec.
An important part of this commitment was to continue working in close partnership with our customers, developing innovative systems to meet their specific requirements. Underlining this strategy are the orders received in 4Q12 for some of our flagship technologies such as MoorMaster™ and for advanced ground support equipment from Cavotec INET in the US. During the quarter we also concluded the official handover of the PCAir project in Bahrain. The acquisition of ground support equipment manufacturer Combibox provided us a foothold in several new geographical areas, providing new market potential for our products and systems. On an organic basis we delivered a solid top line and profitability in a challenging market environment.
We continued our initiatives to maximise our own operational efficiency. A key aspect of this process were the significant actions taken in Germany to streamline production capacity and tailor our product range to reflect shifts in some of our markets. These steps will allow us to continue to deliver optimal performance more consistently across our operations in Germany and, by extension, throughout our Group.
Our sustained focus on the key long-term drivers of our business, such as the growing need for automation, increased demands for operational efficiency, and a continued drive towards environmental sustainability all continue to be fully relevant and show promising growth opportunities ahead. Looking at the short-term, question marks remain regarding the rate of growth in Europe and US and the effect this will have on the other economies around the world. We continue to have relatively low end-customer exposure to Europe, with both the US and BRIC countries showing a growing trend.
Despite macroeconomic headwinds in recent years, we have consistently demonstrated our ability to compete successfully and to maintain growth targets for both revenues and earnings. Thanks to our solid financial performance throughout the quarter and our solid cash generation, we are now in a position to propose an increase in shareholder remuneration.
Although there remains uncertainty in the short-term regarding global economic growth, we are in a strong position thanks to our solid order book — EUR 110.4 million as of January 2013 — our broad product range and our extensive geographic scope enabling us to capitalise on profitable growth opportunities in the period ahead.
Looking at our Market Units we can expect continued growth to come from our Ports & Maritime MU with interesting prospects for MoorMaster and AMP technologies, combined with a renewed focus on less mature markets such as E-RTGs. The offshore industry is set to continue its significant growth seen in 2012. Similarly, our Airports MU stands to build on its substantial 2012 growth, mainly thanks to the on-going development of our complete system offering, significantly boosted by the addition of the INET product range.
The mining industry in general is set for a tough year ahead, especially with regards to the hard rock mining sector. As a consequence our Mining & Tunnelling MU will focus on further developing our presence in the open pit mining industry and related areas to compensate this trend.
Our General Industry MU will remain mostly stable compared to last year with a decrease in activity for cranes and robotics sectors offset by significantly increased activity in land rigs and defence.
We remain fully committed to the financial targets established at the time of our listing. The on-going initiatives to improve our margins have seen considerable progress despite pressure from several exceptional items, which we fully expect not to see repeated in 2013.
A strong emphasis will remain on driving forward cost savings and productivity improvements at our Centres of Excellence and other production facilities, while safeguarding our ability to deliver the best-in-class performance expected by our customers. We will continue to explore opportunities to develop our service revenues, secure the synergies from recent acquisitions, and deliver higher return on investments.
We have seen some excellent achievements this past year and I'm confident that 2013 will see a continuation of this positive trend.
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