Lenzing Group achieves fourth best full-year results in its history
- Challenging market environment due to low prices for standard viscose, less favorable exchange rates and higher raw material and energy prices
- Very positive development of specialty fiber business with revenue share exceeding 45 percent
- Dividend proposal of EUR 3.00/share plus a special dividend of EUR 2.00/share
- Results for 2019 expected at about the level of 2018 despite a significantly more demanding market environment
The Lenzing Group’s business developed well in the 2018 financial year. A significantly more challenging market environment led to a decline in revenue as well as earnings compared with the record results of the previous year. This was primarily caused by lower selling prices for standard viscose, exchange rate effects as well as higher raw material and energy costs.
Group revenue declined by 3.7 percent compared with the previous year to EUR 2.18 bn. The predicted challenging market environment for standard viscose, plus less favorable exchange rates and a slight decline in sales volume were the key contributing factors. EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) was down by 24 percent to EUR 382 million due to price increases for key raw materials and higher energy and personnel costs. The EBITDA margin dropped from 22.2 percent in the 2017 financial year to 17.6 percent in the reporting year. EBIT (earnings before interest and tax) fell by 36 percent to EUR 237.6 mn, leading to a lower EBIT margin of 10.9 percent (2017: 16.4 percent). Net profit for the year after one-off effects dropped by 47.4 percent from EUR 281.7 mn in the previous year to EUR 148.2 mn. Earnings per share equaled EUR 5.61 (2017: EUR 10.47).
The Management Board and the Supervisory Board will propose a stable dividend of EUR 3.00 per share plus a special dividend of EUR 2.00 per share at the upcoming Annual General Meeting. In total, the paid dividend will amount to EUR 5.00 per share, corresponding to a dividend payment to shareholders of roughly EUR 133 mn.