Ramirent faces 'slightly weaker' Nordic demand

By Murray Pollok08 November 2013

Weaker demand from Ramirent’s main Nordic markets saw like-for-like revenues for the third quarter down 3.3% and pre-tax profits down 26%.

Sales in Norway fell by 12.8%, in Finland by 7.1% and in Sweden by 3.6%. The exception was Denmark, where sales rose by 3.9%.

Revenues in the three months to 30 September were €166.2 million, which on a non-adjusted basis was 10.6% down on the same quarter of the previous year. A significant portion of this fall is accounted for by the divestment of the Hungarian business and the transfer of Russian and Ukraine rental operations to the new FortRent joint venture.

EBITDA profits for the quarter were down 13.9% to €52 million, with pre-tax profits falling by 26% to €20.6 million. So far this year the company has invested around €85 million in its fleet, compared to €67 million in the same period of 2012. This spending has been focused on Sweden, Norway and Finland.

Magnus Rosén, Ramirent CEO, said; “The demand for equipment rental in the third quarter was influenced by slightly weaker demand in the construction sector in the Nordic markets except for Denmark, which saw some pick-up in activity.

“Demand in the industrial sector remained fairly active in our Nordic markets. Europe East [Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania] enjoyed favourable market conditions reflected in good demand for equipment rental.

“The integration of FortRent’s business operations continued according to plan. In Europe Central [Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic], market conditions remained weak and we continued to scale down operations to fit the reduced demand situation.”

Mr Rosén said Ramirent’s financial position strengthened during the first nine months of the year, with cash flow up 29.1%; “The near-term market outlook continues to be uncertain. We are however well-positioned to manage changes in market conditions. At the same time, we continue to develop our common Ramirent platform to realise higher operational synergies throughout the Group.

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