Report on operations for the nine months ended September 30, 2001


Report on operations for the nine months ended September 30, 2001 Strong improvement in operating cash flow in the third quarter · Cash flow from operations was SEK 374 million (38) in the third quarter. · Debt reduction of SEK 224 million due to lower inventories. · Operating income in the third quarter was SEK 57 million (56) despite weakening markets. "It is very satisfying to see the results of our hard work on inventory reduction in the form of a substantially better operating cash flow. We have also been able to improve our operating income excluding restructuring costs somewhat for the nine months compared to last year. However, due to the worsened economic climate, the operating income for the fourth quarter is expected to be lower than last year." comments Anders Igel, President and CEO. [REMOVED GRAPHICS] Results for the third quarter Sales for the third quarter were SEK 2,663 million (2,645), an increase of 0.7%. Change in sales for comparable exchange rates and units was - 8.2% compared to the third quarter last year. The main reason for the large difference between these two percentage figures is the general weakening of the Swedish krona. For seasonality reasons, third quarter sales tend to be weaker for Esselte. However, given the adverse market situation, sales held up slightly better than expected in the third quarter. The integration of Curtis into Esselte Americas is almost completed and will be finished before the end of the year 2001. DYMO was the best performing product category with sales in the third quarter of SEK 370 million (315). The gross margin was 27.2% (26.2%) in the third quarter. Operating income for the quarter was SEK 57 million compared to SEK 56 million last year, an increase of 1.8 %. The company is able to show this result, despite a weak market, primarily due to earlier initiated cost reduction programs. The net financial expense was SEK -46 million compared with SEK -51 million last year. The improvement is due to falling interest rates and reduction of debt. ------------------------------------------------------------ This information was brought to you by Waymaker http://www.waymaker.net The following files are available for download: http://www.waymaker.net/bitonline/2001/10/22/20011022BIT00680/bit0001.doc The full report http://www.waymaker.net/bitonline/2001/10/22/20011022BIT00680/bit0001.pdf The full report