Blue Cap AG with strong growth in revenue and earnings in the 2022 financial year
_According to preliminary calculations, consolidated revenue increases by 30% to EUR 347.5 million (previous year: EUR 267.3 million) and is at the upper end of the guidance of EUR 335-350 million
_Adjusted EBITDA(1) improves by 23% to EUR 30.3 million (previous year: EUR 24.6 million)
_Adjusted EBITDA margin of 8.6% also in line with expectations (guidance: 8-9%)
_Outlook 2023: Revenue and earnings expected to be at 2022 level
Munich, March 07, 2023 Based on preliminary and unaudited calculations, Blue Cap AG ("Blue Cap") can look back on a 2022 financial year with strong profitable growth. In a challenging environment, consolidated revenue rose by 30% year-on-year to EUR 347.5 million (previous year: EUR 267.3 million) and is thus at the upper end of the expected range of EUR 335-350 million. The operating result (adjusted EBITDA(1)) improved to EUR 30.3 million (+23% compared to the previous year: EUR 24.6 million). This corresponds to a margin of 8.6% (previous year: 9.1%) of total output, which is also in line with the forecast of 8-9%. Adjusted EBIT reached EUR 16.2 million (previous year: EUR 13.3 million). The corresponding margin is 4.6% (previous year: 4.9%). The net debt ratio (including lease liabilities) was 2.4 years (previous year: 2.6 years) and thus within the target range of less than 3.5 years. The development of con-pearl, which, as in the previous year, benefited from a major order in the logistics sector, and the improved volume at H+E and HY-LINE, which had a record year due to a high order backlog and improved delivery capability, were essential for the significant growth. On an inorganic level, the acquisition of Transline and the first full-year inclusion of H+E and HY-LINE contributed to the positive trend.
New segment Business Services accounts for a quarter of total revenue
As of December 31, 2022, Blue Cap's portfolio includes eight majority holdings, which are allocated to the Plastics, Adhesives & Coatings, Business Services and Others segments, and one minority holding.
The Plastics segment was able to significantly increase both revenue and earnings. As mentioned, the main drivers of this development were con-pearl and H+E. After a difficult start to the year, H+E was able to noticeably improve its operating performance in the second half of the year. Customers from the automotive industry have increased production volumes and new orders have been successfully launched. The result of Uniplast, on the other hand, was slightly below the previous year due to the delay in passing on increases in energy prices.
Although the Adhesives & Coatings segment increased its revenue year-on-year due to inflation, earnings fell short of expectations. The subsidiary Planatol felt economic headwinds and reduced demand in the second half of the year. At Neschen, the year was marked by the realignment, which will be continued in 2023. Overall, the segment's earnings were therefore lower than in the previous year.
The HY-LINE Group from the Business Services segment recorded the strongest growth rate with 40% compared to the previous year. The company was able to gradually increase its ability to deliver and thus process the strong order intake and inventory. In terms of revenue, Transline developed at the same level as in the previous year, but missed the expected growth in 2022 due to project postponements at major customers.
The year-on-year development of the Others segment was significantly influenced by the sale and deconsolidation of Gämmerler and Carl Schaefer. Blue Cap's smallest portfolio company, Nokra, developed significantly better than in the previous year. Even after the corona pandemic subsided, the minority holding INHECO was able to keep sales at the previous year's level. However, due to investments in long-term growth in a market that is still very attractive, the result is below the previous year.
Segment key figures at a glance
|EUR million||2022 (prel.)||2021||Change in % or in basis points (bps)|
|Adjusted EBITDA margin in %||11.4%||12.5%||-1.1bps|
|Adhesives & Coatings|
|Adjusted EBITDA margin in %||5.0%||7.7%||-2.7bps|
|Adjusted EBITDA margin in %||7.5%||6.2%||1.3bps|
|Adjusted EBITDA margin in %||2.1%||-1.9%||4bps|
Note: rounding differences are possible
(*) The Others segment includes Nokra, the Group's holding, real estate management companies, and portfolio companies already sold as of the reporting date.
Tobias Hoffmann-Becking, CEO of Blue Cap, is satisfied with the development: "Last year we demonstrated the resilience of our portfolio. Even if we were able to defy the difficult framework conditions with a very good operational development, the economic challenges have shown us where we still need to improve. We take these tasks with us into the current year and will work very specifically on transformation programs in the portfolio companies.” Henning Eschweiler, who has been responsible for portfolio management as COO at Blue Cap since September 2022, adds: “We increase the resilience of the portfolio by focusing on cash flows and margins - this means that we remain able to act in a difficult market environment. On the one hand, this means consistent cost management and staff cuts in the high double-digit range across all portfolio companies. On the other hand, we make very targeted investments in growth initiatives to give selected companies access to more dynamic markets. And last but not least, we are currently implementing changes in key functions in the majority of our subsidiaries so that we can strengthen the ability to transform in the companies themselves.”
Outlook for 2023: Another good operational performance expected
After another record year in 2022, the Blue Cap Management Board expects for the 2023 financial year that revenue and earnings will be roughly at the level of the good prior-year figures (including special effects). After a restrained start to the year caused by the general economic situation, an upturn is expected in the subsequent quarters, especially in the second half of the year. The outlook is based on the premise of no further intensification of geopolitical uncertainties and a continuation of the signs of easing on the cost side. The Management Board will specify the forecast as the year progresses.
To coincide with the publication of the preliminary 2022 figures, a conference call with the Management Board of Blue Cap AG will take place at 1:30 pm today. You can register under this link (see below). The corresponding presentation can be found on our website under https://www.blue-cap.de/en/investor-relations/presentations/ after the conference call.
The key figures disclosed in this press release are preliminary and have not been audited. The Annual Report 2022 with the audited figures and further details will be published at the beginning of May.
(1) Adjustments to reflect extraordinary, prior-periodic and other effects from reorganization measures and one-off effects, as well as effects arising from the purchase price allocations