Interim Report Pricer AB January – September 2016
Improved operating margin, cash flow and order intake
Third quarter 2016
- Net sales of SEK 210.0 M (304.3), a decrease of 31 percent compared to the same period last year
- Operating profit of SEK 29.0 M (31.3) and profit for the period of SEK 23.6 M (20.7)
- Cash flow from operating activities improved to SEK 68.8 M (24.6)
- Order intake of SEK 145 M (119), an increase of 22 percent compared to the same period last year
- The backlog is approximately SEK 100 M (130), of which the majority is expected to be invoiced in the fourth quarter of 2016
- Andreas Renulf has been appointed as the new President and CEO of Pricer AB and will take up his position on January 1, 2017. Charles Jackson, who has been acting CEO since May this year, will continue in this role until Andreas Renulf takes up his position and will subsequently return to his role as Deputy CEO, responsible for strategy, sales and marketing.
|Amounts in SEK M unless otherwise stated||Q 3||Q 3||9 months||9 months||Full year|
|Cash flow from operating activities||68,8||24,6||110,7||8,7||101,4|
|Profit for the period||23,6||20,7||39,3||29,1||37,0|
|Earnings per share (SEK)||0,21||0,19||0,36||0,26||0,34|
* See Note 1 in the complete version of the interim report.
Comments from acting CEO, Charles Jackson
During the third quarter, both gross margin and operating margin showed improvement compared to the same period last year. An achievement despite the fact that sales fell short of the record high reported in the corresponding quarter last year. The stronger gross margin, which also contributed to a higher operating margin, is an effect of reduced costs in the supply chain and a continued favorable product mix. Third quarter sales consisted of less significant but more distributed projects which has also had a positive impact on gross margin.
Third quarter order intake was somewhat higher than in the corresponding quarter of last year and was spread between a large number of customers and across several geographical areas, however France continues to stand out as the biggest single market for Pricer. Looking ahead, we anticipate continued high activity from our existing customer base. As previously reported, deliveries to our Norwegian partner Strongpoint for the grocery retailer Bunnpris have been delayed but is expected to commence in the fourth quarter this year. Deliveries to a number of franchise stores in the French grocery retail chain Système U were started as planned during the third quarter, contributing to both order intake and net sales. Deliveries to this customer are expected to continue throughout 2016 and 2017.
We believe that the lack of new major customer projects to our existing portfolio of customer deployments is temporary. The digitization of retail clearly includes optimized solutions for price updating, but for our customers the development also involves increased considerations in terms of infrastructure and information systems that prolongs decision times. The requirements for scalability, durability and speed continuously increases, which specifically favors Pricer.
The third quarter of 2016 was characterized by continued strong demand in France and a consistently high level of activity in Europe as well as both North and South America where the number of pilot programs continue to increase. The rising number of pilot installations for store digitization reinforce our impression that major procurements in the years ahead will include systems for electronic shelf labels that support solutions for both shelf edge price and data updating as well as product positioning. Grocery retail, which currently makes up Pricer’s strongest segment, will continue to be part of this trend and serve as a platform for increased growth in closely related segments such as electronics and Do-it-yourself chains.
Another interesting trend worth pointing out is that we see an increase in partial store installations where the retailers are deploying electronic shelf labels system specifically in one or two departments of the store to update price information more often. Recent deal activity includes, for example, a deployment in fruit and vegetable as well as fish sections. This trend highlights the need to use price optimization to reduce waste and improve profitability.
I am particularly proud of our strong cash flow as a result of the structural improvements we have achieved in the production and delivery processes during the last year. This makes us well poised to add-on major customer projects. The strengthened financial position now gives Pricer the ability to accelerate the development of products and services in parallel with a continued focus on sales- and marketing activities in numerous strategic markets.
For further information, please contact:
Charles Jackson, acting CEO, or Helena Holmgren, CFO, Pricer AB: +46 8 505 582 00.
This information is information that Pricer AB is obliged to make public pursuant to the EU Market Abuse Regulation and the Securities Markets Act. The information was submitted for publication, through the agency by the contact persons set out above, at 8:30 CET on October 28, 2016.