Utfors interim report
Significant events during the third quarter and up until the date of
· Continued strong demand for Utfors' "IP Port" leading to 1272
contracted access points as of 30 September 2001, of which 276 during
the third quarter. In addition further 220 accesses has been signed up
until the date of this report.
· New customers for IP Ports are Tieto Enator, Intentia and Preem
· Net total sales for the third quarter amounted to MSEK 116.7
representing an increase of 73 percent compared with the same period
· EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation &
Amortisation) amounted to MSEK -87.2 (-3.9) for the third quarter.
EBITDA excluding earnings from network sales amounted in the third
quarter to MSEK -92.0 (-44.3).
· Utfors has initiated a costs savings program that is expected to
enable savings of approximately MSEK 50 - 60 during the period up until
the end of 2002.
· Utfors was informed on 27 September that the operator Pangea has
gone into receivership, implying that expected debt due to Utfors of
MSEK 100 plus ongoing maintenance and site leasing are now doubtful.
3 mths 3 mths 9 mths 9 mths 12 mths
July- July-Sept Jan-Sept Jan-Sept Full
msek 2001 2000 2001 2000 2000
Net total sales 116.7 67.3 312.7 209.2 283.4
EBITDA 1) -87.2 -3.9 -247.1 -2.9 -39.1
Adjusted EBITDA 2) -92.0 -44.3 -268.7 -113.4 -173.3
Operating loss -142.3 -18.6 -369.8 -38.8 -119.2
Loss after financial -214.5 -20.3 -457.6 -43.3 -131.8
1) Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation & Amortisation
2) Excluding earnings from network sales
3) The amount includes exchange rate gains/losses and commission
expenses, etc. in conjunction with raising loans of MSEK 60
Jan Werne, CEO
tel +46 8 5270 2540, mobile +46 708 48 2540, email
Markus Boberg, Corporate Communications
tel +46 8 5270 3016, mobile +46 708 48 3016, email
Mikael Sköld, CFO
tel +46 8 5270 3011, mobile +46 708 48 3011, email
OPERATIONS IN GENERAL
Utfors supplies the market's most cost-effective and high-quality
broadband-based communications services, based on the next generation of
IP networks. Focusing primarily on the corporate market, Utfors aims to
be one of the leading suppliers of broadband-based communications
services in the Nordic Region.
Events During the Period and up until the date of this report
Events in the surrounding world such as the deterioration of the
economic climate, an increased uncertainty in the market, as well as a
doubtful debt due to Utfors by Pangea (notified in a press release on 27
September), led to Utfors initiating a rationalisation and costs-savings
program during the period. The program is expected to enable savings of
approximately MSEK 50 - 60 up until the end of 2002, including estimated
reorganisation costs that are expected to include nonrecurring
restructuring expenses of MSEK 5 - 10, which will be charged against Q4.
On 3 October Utfors launched, in collaboration with the American company
Terabeam, a completely new form of wireless access technology for high-
speed data communication and the Internet. The technology, which is
known as Free Space Optics, implies that data is transmitted with light
waves, a kind of laser, with speeds of up to 1 Gbps. Utfors is thereby
given a real alternative to access customers where today there is no
fibre. A pilot customer installation has been carried out with Differ, a
consultancy firm within brand-name strategy.
Utfors sold its first IP Port with Gigabit speed on 30th of October. The
customer is active within the bank and finance sector in Norway
Utfors offers companies, municipalities and public authorities a service
portfolio based on Utfors' IP Port. Utfors' IP Port is a service that
provides a simplified data and telecommunications solution with
extremely high capacity. Both data and telephony traffic can be joined
in a physical connection with Utfors' IP Port. Calls between directly
connected customers in Utfors' Nordic network are always free of charge.
The service has received good reports and 1272 access points have been
contracted as at 30 September 2001, involving 276 new accesses during
the third quarter. Utfors has signed a number of strategically important
contracts, including with Tieto Enator, Intentia and Preem.
At the end of the period, 650 IP Ports were active. Utfors implemented
measures during the first half-year in order to increase the Company's
delivery and activating capacity. These measures have been successful
and Utfors activated 243 IP Ports during the third quarter, of which the
main part during the later part of the quarter. The delivery capacity is
considered to be sufficient for the forecasted future growth of the
At the end of the period, Utfors had approximately 7 500 indirect
Revenues derived from sales of IP Ports are recorded at the time that
the service is provided. The ARPU of activated ports amounted to SEK 11
400, a decrease from SEK 12 400 during the previous report period.
However, the ARPU for sold but not yet activated IP-ports indicates that
the ARPU is again increasing.
Utfors increased its marketing focus towards the private market during
the third quarter. Utfors also reviewed its customer services and
implemented an overall customer offer. Utfors intends to ensure
continued good growth in the telephony and Internet connections segment
of the private market. The campaign has been successful and the net
inflow during October was approximately 2000 subscriptions.
Revenues from Utfors indirect services have increased during the period
to MSEK 74.7 (60.3 in the second quarter 2001).
At the end of the period, Utfors had approximately 140 000 active
Network Sales and IRU
Utfors did not complete any new infrastructure sales during the period.
Nor does the Company expect any strong potential for new contracts
within the infrastructure area during the fourth quarter.
On the 27 of September 2001, Utfors was informed that the operator
Pangea had gone into receivership, which implies that the expected debt
due to Utfors of MSEK 100 plus ongoing maintenance and leasing are now
Income from ducts and contracting agreements is reported in the Earnings
from Network Sales line. Earnings from contracting agreements are
successively booked in accordance with the degree of completion.
Earnings from duct sales are recorded on final delivery. For the period
January to September 2001, earnings from network sales amounted to MSEK
21.7 (110.5), and pertain in their entirety to contracting agreements.
Sales of fibre capacity (IRU), telehousing, and operation and
maintenance (O&M) are reported on the "Net sales" line. Earnings are
recognized straight line over the total contract period. Net sales for
the January-September period included MSEK 43.5 (0.9) resulting from
sales of IRU, telehousing, and O&M.
Net total sales for the quarter amounted to MSEK 116.7 (MSEK 67.3), of
which indirect telephony services (prefix and pre-select telephony)
accounted for MSEK 47.3, dial-up Internet services for MSEK 27.4, direct
telephony services for MSEK 1.5, IP Port services for MSEK 22.4, fixed
Internet services for MSEK 2.4, network sales (IRU, tele-housing and
O&M) for MSEK 10.4, and other items for MSEK 5.2.
The operating loss before depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA)
amounted to MSEK -87.2 (-3.9). The operating loss for the quarter
amounted to MSEK -142.3 (-18.6). The operating result includes profits
of MSEK 4.8 (40.1) from network sales. The operating loss for the
quarter after financial items amounted to MSEK -214.5 (MSEK -20.3). In
the financial items, nonrecurring items in connection with the new
credit facility finalised in June was included. Depreciation for the
quarter amounted to MSEK 55.1 (14.7). Tax expense for the quarter, which
relates in its entirety to the subsidiary Uteb AB, amounted to MSEK -0.8
Nine-Month Period January-September
Net total sales for the period January-September amounted to MSEK 312.7
(MSEK 209.2). Indirect telephony services (prefix and pre-select
telephony) accounted for MSEK 118.1, dial-up Internet services for MSEK
81.2, direct telephony services for MSEK 3.6, IP Port services for MSEK
46.4, fixed Internet services for MSEK 10.0, network sales (IRU, tele-
housing and O&M) for MSEK 43.5, and other items for MSEK 9.8.
Costs for services sold have increased as a consequence of strong growth
in operations, considerable costs for the development of the IP Port,
the start-up of the Company's own network and increased costs within
Utfors Fibre Network.
The operating loss before depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA)
amounted to MSEK -247.1 (-2.9). The operating loss for the period
amounted to MSEK -369.8 (-38.8). The operating loss for the period after
financial items amounted to MSEK -457.6 (-43.3). The operating result
includes profits of MSEK 21.7 (110.5) from network sales.
Depreciation for the period amounted to MSEK 122.7 (35.9). The increase
is due to the operational start-up of the network and to the expansion
Tax expense for the period, which relates in its entirety to the
subsidiary Uteb AB, amounted to MSEK -3.2 (-30.9).
Net investments during the period amounted to MSEK 745.8 (1 174.0) and
consisted essentially of tangible fixed assets related to the network
amounting to MSEK 740.1 (1 160.4).
Free cash flow for the period amounted to MSEK -741.9 (-1 210.5) and is
due primarily to the investments made in the Company's own network.
Long-term liabilities amounted at the end of the period to MSEK 833.3
including MSEK 558.0 from a syndicated credit and MSEK 172.6 from a
Liquid funds at the end of the period amounted to MSEK 84.6 (154.0).
On 11 July, Utfors signed an agreement concerning a restructured
syndicated credit. The new credit involves a maximum credit limit of
MSEK 950 with final maturity during 2007. The credit is subject as
previously to customary terms and conditions regarding the development
of Utfors' business activity.
As previously mentioned, Utfors was informed on 27 September that Pangea
has gone into receivership. Negotiations are currently in progress with
the appointed Receiver concerning the expected debt due by Pangea to
Utfors. The Company's management believes that Utfors' long-term
financing requirements will be influenced by the eventual outcome of
this matter. The Company, the board and senior management group, have
together with the bank syndicate therefore started to review the
Company's financial situation.
KEY FINANCIAL DATA
The return on capital employed was negative for both the report period
and the corresponding nine-month period last year, as was the return on
The net debt/equity ratio was a multiple of 0.7 (0.7). The equity/assets
ratio amounted to 34.1 percent (40.5 percent). Earnings per share were
negative for both the report period 2001 and 2000. Shareholders' equity
per share amounted to SEK 23.43 (25.61).
SHARE DATA AND OWNERSHIP STRUCTURE
The number of registered shares as at 30 September 2001 amounted to 46
163 259 (35 800 473). The average number of shares for the period
January-September amounted to 45 548 280 (33 563 308). Warrants
corresponding to 3 460 606 new shares were outstanding, which implies
that the number of shares after full exercise of the warrants amounted
to 49 623 865.
As at 30 September 2001, the Company had approximately 10 000
shareholders, of which the largest were Norsk Vekst and Litorina
NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES
The Utfors group had 366 employees (229) at the end of the period.
The parent company had 10 employees (8) at the end of the period.
Net total sales for the period amounted to MSEK 11.3 (MSEK 11.3). Profit
after net financial items amounted to MSEK 4.8 (MSEK 3.0).
Net investments during the period amounted to MSEK 450.9 (MSEK 244.4),
and consisted essentially of shareholder contributions to subsidiaries.
Liquid funds at the end of the report period amounted to MSEK 69.2
OUTLOOK FOR 2001 / 2002
The level of investment for 2001 will continue to decline at the same
time as investments are switched from networks to customer access
The revenue from Utfors fixed services are expected to increase
significantly starting from the 4th quarter this year.
Based on this development, a positive EBITDA is expected to be achieved
towards the end of 2002.
ACCOUNTING AND VALUATION PRINCIPLES
The same accounting principles and calculation methods have been applied
in the interim report as in the most recent annual report.
This report has not been examined by the Company's auditor.
Solna, 7 November 2001
Utfors AB (publ)
The Board of Directors
The Group's consolidated profit & loss statement, balance sheet, cash
flow statement, quarterly data and key figures and ratios, as well as
financial terminology are set out in Appendix 1.
Utfors AB (publ)
(Swedish Corporate Registration Number 556513-3393)
169 29 Solna, Sweden
Switchboard: +46 8 5270 20 00
Telefax: +46 8 5270 25 95
This and other interim reports are also available at Utfors' website
SUMMARY OF THE PERIOD BY JAN WERNE, PRESIDENT & CEO OF UTFORS AB
"I have noted with pleasure that sales of Utfors' IP Port is growing, in
spite of the deterioration of the economic climate and the current
troubled global political situation. This is due to the demand for
Utfors' services being stronger than we had first estimated. The sales-
cycles have however been continuously lengthened during the year.
Overall, this development implies that the Company is maintaining the
sales volume that we expected. The total sales of IP Ports during the
third quarter amounted to 276 units, of which most of the contracts were
signed in September. It is also very positive that Utfors' partners have
actively contributed to these sales. We continue to witness that Utfors'
partners play an increasingly important role in the Company's total
sales statistics. During the period, Utfors signed a further important
partner agreement with Tieto Enator, and now has partner agreements with
three of the largest systems integrators in the Swedish market.
As normal, the third quarter was somewhat quieter, but I forecast that
the fourth quarter will significantly contribute to the positive sales
trend of direct services, implying that we are well on the way to
establishing a volume of sales leading to a net annual addition to the
installed base of more than 2000 IP Ports. The forecast that a positive
EBITDA be achieved towards the end of 2002 still stands.
The objective to increase the ARPU of IP-ports is intensified. We will
actively offer our add-on services such as fixed telephony and e-meeting
to our existing IP-port costumers. Our aim is to increase the share of
IP-ports that also include our add-on telephony service. I have also
noticed that the pressure on prices for fixed services now seems to be
over, which of course creates better conditions for reaching this
Customer agreements (private or corporate) that generated revenues
during the final month of the reporting period.
Average revenue per subscription per month
Return on shareholders' equity
Net profit/loss during the most recent 12 months as a percentage of
average shareholders' equity.
Return on capital employed
Profit/loss after financial items during the most recent 12 months plus
financial expense as a percentage of average capital employed.
Net sales less variable and fixed traffic costs, direct personnel costs
and other direct overhead expenses, including development expenses.
Operating profit/loss plus depreciation and write-downs.
Shareholders' equity per share
Shareholders' equity divided by the number of shares at the end of the
Free cash flow
Cash flow after changes in funds tied up in operations and investments
before paid taxes.
Average number of shares
Weighted number of shares on the basis of when the asset is credited to
Invoiced sales plus accrued income less credited and accrued discounts.
Interest-bearing provisions and liabilities, less current financial
assets and other interest-bearing assets.
Net debt/equity ratio
Net debt divided by shareholders' equity.
Operating profit/loss as a percentage of net sales.
Shareholders equity including minority interests as a percentage of
Total assets less interest-free provisions and liabilities.
Earnings per share
Net profit/loss for the period divided by average number of shares.