Year-end report January–December 2018

Q4 October–December 2018

  • Net sales increased by 21 percent to SEK 1,831 (1,517) million
  • EBITA increased by 22 percent to SEK 173 (142) million
  • Organic EBITA growth was 2 percent
  • Profit after tax increased by 31 percent to SEK 121 (93) million
  • Earnings per ordinary share after deduction of preference share dividends increased by 37 percent to SEK 1.30 (0.95)

Period January–December 2018

  • Net sales increased by 40 percent to SEK 6,084 (4,356) million
  • EBITA increased by 15 percent to SEK 433 (377) million
  • Organic EBITA was unchanged
  • Profit after tax increased by 13 percent to SEK 274 (241) million
  • Earnings per ordinary share after deduction of preference share dividends increased by 18 percent to SEK 2.58 (2.19)
  • In view of Volati’s strong financial position and the good cash flows, the Board proposes to increase the dividend to ordinary shareholders to SEK 1.00 (0.50) per ordinary share.

Events after the reporting period

Volati redeems Akademibokhandeln’s bond and enters into a new loan agreement with Nordea.

COMMENTS FROM THE CEO

A positive conclusion to 2018

Volati ended the year with strong growth in sales and earnings. During the fourth quarter, we also realised the positive effects of measures taken in several business areas.

Volati continued to show strong growth in both sales and earnings during Q4 2018. Net sales increased by 21 percent to SEK 1,831 million. EBITA increased by 22 percent to SEK 173 million. The growth is primarily driven by completed acquisitions, but also by good momentum in most of our operations.

Strong development for Industry

The Industry business area had a very good fourth quarter with strong earnings growth. All operations have developed positively, with market conditions remaining good. Our efficient management of the challenges we had in Q4 2017 is the basis for the positive development in 2018. We are satisfied with the integration process for S:t Eriks and have a new management group in place.

Positive trend for Akademibokhandeln

The Akademibokhandeln business area had a good fourth quarter with slightly increased sales and good profitability. I am particularly pleased that the measures taken to streamline operations and reduce costs have produced clear results. EBITA increased during Q4 due to the activities undertaken, while customer demand was good. Akademibokhandeln now enters 2019 with a strong customer offering and lower fixed costs than in several years. I believe that the development in the Industry and Akademibokhandeln business areas shows the strength of our organisation. We work together to create long-term value by making good companies even better and at the same time addressing any challenges that arise during the course of the operations.

Challenging for Consumer, stable for Trading

The fourth quarter has been challenging for the Consumer business area. Both sales and earnings declined during the quarter compared with the same quarter in 2017. This is related to Besikta Bilprovning and the changed inspection rules that came into force in 2018. In simple terms, the inspection interval has been extended from 12 to 14 months, which has had an adverse effect on the customer base for the entire vehicle inspection sector. This will also affect Besikta in the first half of 2019. Besikta’s market position is strong with a market share of about 25 percent and we are working on both staffing at the stations and price adjustments to ensure good profitability in the period ahead. The Trading business area’s development during the quarter was in line with the same period in 2017. We were negatively affected by the weaker krona, as most of the companies import their products. At the same time, we note that the market conditions for the business area have remained good during the quarter.

Strong growth for the full year

Looking at the full year 2018, Volati has shown a strong increase in sales and earnings as a result of both acquisitions and efficiency measures. During the year, we have been working to reduce the cost level throughout the Group. One reason for this is that we want to be well prepared for any weaker economic trend in the future. At the same time, it is important to note that we have not seen any change in market conditions and demand during the year.

Our financial position is very strong. The debt to EBITDA ratio is 1.7, which is significantly below our long-term financial target of a maximum of 3.0. In other words, we have considerable scope for acquisitions compared with the target.

Our level of acquisition activity in the Group remains high. Our new acquisition organisation enables us to evaluate more potential acquisitions simultaneously than we previously could. There are many acquisition opportunities on the market at present, but we see that the proportion of deals closed is lower than before. We find in many cases that price expectations of sellers and buyers differ, which means that it takes longer to close the transactions.

Our aim is to remain active in the acquisition market in 2019 while driving efficiency and profitability in our existing operations. Regardless of how the market develops, we have the financial and organisational capacity to make acquisitions when the right opportunity is presented.

Mårten Andersson, President and CEO


Conference call

CEO Mårten Andersson and CFO Mattias Björk will present the interim report in a conference call on 21 February at 9.00. The presentation will be conducted in Swedish.
Phone number to access the conference call: +46 (0)8-505 583 52. For a webcast of the conference call, go to www.volati.se.

This information is information that Volati AB (publ) is obliged to make public pursuant to the EU Market Abuse Regulation (MAR). The information was submitted for publication, through the agency of the contact persons set out below, at 7.45 a.m. (CEST) on 21 February 2019.

For more information, please contact:

Mårten Andersson, CEO, +46 (0)72-735 42 84, marten.andersson@volati.se
Mattias Björk, CFO, +46 (0)70-610 80 89, mattias.bjork@volati.se

Volati AB (publ)
Corporate reg. no. 556555-4317
Engelbrektsplan 1, SE-114 34 Stockholm
Tel: +46 8-21 68 40
www.volati.se

About Volati 

Volati is a Swedish industrial group, founded in 2003, consisting of four business areas: Trading, Consumer, Akademibokhandeln and Industry. Volati mainly acquires companies with proven business models, leading market positions and strong cash flows at reasonable valuations and develops them with a focus on long-term value creation. The strategy is to build on the companies’ identity and entrepreneurial spirit, adding leadership, expertise, processes and financial resources. Volati has operations in 16 countries, over 2,000 employees and after the acquisition of S:t Eriks annual sales of approximately SEK 6.7 billion. Volati’s ordinary shares and preference shares are listed on Nasdaq Stockholm. Further information is available at www.volati.se.

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