Cramo sustains high growth in 2nd quarter

By Murray Pollok13 August 2008

Cramo's latest results show no slowing down of its growth, with its central and eastern European businesses advancing by more than 50% and overall revenue growth at 32.3% for the quarter to 30 June. The company said the next 12 months would see a moderation of growth in the Nordic area and a continued downturn in the Baltic States, with sustained growth in eastern and central Europe.

The increase in sales for the three month period - up 32.4% to €154.0 million - reflects both the amount of expenditure on expanding its fleet during 2007 and early 2008, as well as some acquisitions. Profits were also up, with EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) increasing 37% to €30.7 million for the quarter.

Cramo said the outlook for the business remained good despite the uncertain economic environment. It said construction would continue to grow in the Nordic countries in 2008 and also in Sweden in 2009, with more uncertainty over the other Nordic countries - Finland, Denmark and Norway.

"Central and Eastern Europe are expected to see sustained growth", said the company, "In the Baltics the construction market is down." Cramo said the high expenditure on new fleet seen in 2007 would be exceeded in 2008, "strongly targeted" at Central Europe and Russia.

Revenues in central and eastern Europe (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, the Czech Republic, Russia and Slovakia) grew by 52% to €19.8 million, representing 13% of the company's total. EBITDA fell15% to €3.0 million, the result of the slowdown in the Baltic States and costs associated with the launch and expansion of the Cramo Rentakran joint venture in Russia.

Cramo's sales in Sweden grew by 23% to €65.1 million, by 28% €23.5 million in Finland, and by 63% to €26.7 million in Norway and Denmark. Cramo said the rapid growth in Norway and Denmark was based on "completed growth investment and acquisitions" and that it expected its businesses to continue to grow strongly in both countries.

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