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ICT annual results 2013: substantial increase operating result

FOCUS ON VERTICALS AND PROJECT RELATED BUSINESS PAYS OFF

Key Developments in 4th Quarter and full year 2013:

  • Full year revenue increased by 2.1% to € 79.5 million (2012: € 77.8 million), this increase was realized in the second half of the year 2013 compared to the second half of the year 2012 (+6.1%).
  • Compared to Q4 2012 , operating result from ordinary operations in Q4 2013 increased € 1.7 million.
  • The full year 2013 operating result from ordinary operations before exceptional items increased substantially from € 1.7 million to € 4.9 million. The operating margin increased to 6.2% in 2013 (2012: 2.2%).
  • Net cash flow from operating activities was € 5.3 million.
  • Impairment of Improve Quality Services (€ 3.4 million) influenced net result.
  • Net result amounted to a loss of € 1.1 million (2012: loss of € 5.2 million).


Jos Blejie, CEO of ICT Automatisering N.V.:“The further roll out of our verticals strategy and the continued reduction of indirect costs have led to clear improvements in results in 2013, despite the fact that the market remains dominated by a reluctance to invest. We have signed a number of partnerships with leading players in a number of our key industries. These partnerships are of vital importance for the successful introduction of our products and services. For the coming year, we will further roll out our strategy and boost efforts in promising product market combinations. Our company is well-positioned for further growth, we are confident that 2014 will show a further improvement in the operating result compared to 2013.”
Notes to the results
ICT’s total revenue raised by 2.1% to € 79.5 million (2012: € 77.8 million). Revenue at ICT Netherlands increased by 6.2% to € 66.0 million (2012: € 62.1 million). Especially in the second half of 2013 ICT realized a substantial increase in revenue compared to the second half of 2012, as a result of increased demand for ICT’s services, and a consequent improved utilisation rate. All verticals, except Automotive Germany showed an increase in revenue. InTraffic saw its revenue increase, whereas at Improve, revenue was down considerably. The cost of sales, mostly material, expenses and outsourced work, increased to € 9.4 million (2012: € 9.0 million) as a result of different mix of business.
Personnel expenses, at € 50.0 million in 2013, were down slightly from the € 50.2 million recorded in 2012. This was largely due to the lower average number of employees (minus 19 FTE). As in 2012, ICT incurred one-off costs in 2013. In 2012 this amounted to € 2.6 million and comprised of a provision for so-called onerous contracts, the sale of the Neustadt activities and other restructuring measures. In 2013, this amounted to € 1.4 million. € 1.0 million of these costs concern expenses related to investigations of strategic combinations. The other € 0.4 million exceptional costs were related to the termination benefit of the former CEO who left the company in November 2013.
The focus on the reduction of indirect costs – is now paying off. In 2013, indirect costs – including depreciation on tangible assets – came in at € 16.9 million, down 12% from the € 19.3 million recorded in 2012. Including the depreciation charges on fixed assets, indirect expenses came in at 21% of revenue in 2013, down from nearly 25% in 2012, mainly as a result of lower indirect personnel costs and lower rental costs.
The total operating result before exceptional items for the year 2013 increased to € 4.9 million or 6.2% of revenues compared to € 1.7 million or 2.2 % of revenues in 2012. The improvement in results was due primarily to the improved utilisation rate of our staff as a result of an increase in demand for ICT’s services. In addition, the sale of the Neustadt activities (Q4 2012) and the reduction of indirect costs also resulted in improved profitability.
The Verticals Machine & Systems (including Healthcare and Energy), Industrial Automation and Logistics managed to record positive and improved results compared to 2012. The vertical Automotive was loss making during 2013 (€ 0.6 million negative; 2012: € 2.1 negative). However, in the second half of 2013, the operating result of the Automotive Vertical was € 0.1 million positive. Automotive Germany did book improved results compared with the previous year and the first half of 2013. The appointment of new management with a focus on business development, the departure of a number of professionals who could not be deployed on a structural basis, and also the ongoing reduction in the number of indirect employees resulted in a small loss of € 0.1 million in the fourth quarter.
The performance of InTraffic developed positive, while the results of Improve Quality Services lagged. This was largely due to companies postponing training courses in the current economic climate.
The Vertical Automotive Germany and Improve Quality Services were again critically assessed for goodwill impairment purposes. Based on this it was decided to again impair goodwill for Improve Quality Services B.V. for an amount of € 3.4 million.
Taxes in 2013 totalled €1.2 million. ICT devaluated the loans to Germany as a result of losses in Germany for an amount of € 2.4 million. As a result a deferred tax liability was recognized for an amount of € 0.6 million.
Net loss was € 1.1 million, compared with a loss of € 5.3 million in 2012. This translates into a loss per outstanding weighted average ordinary share of € 0.13. The number of outstanding ordinary shares on 31 December 2013 amounted unchanged to 8,747,544.
Q4 2013 results
Revenue in Q4 2013 increased 9.0% to € 21.0 million compared to € 19.2 million in the last quarter of 2012. In the fourth quarter of 2013, an operating result from ordinary operations of € 2 million was realized, a substantial improvement from € 0.3 million in Q4 2012. This exceptional improvement was due to a relatively high number of working days in combination with an improved utilisation rate.
Balance sheet structure
Shareholders’ equity decreased to € 30.3 million, mainly as the result of the addition of the net loss for 2013. The trade receivables and other receivables have decreased by approximately € 0.3 million as of year-end 2013 due to effective billing and debtor collection. The balance sheet total decreased with € 0.6 million from € 47.8 million at year-end 2012 to € 47.2 million at year-end 2013. The solvency (shareholders’ equity/total assets) developed from 65.9% at year-end 2012 to 64.2% at year end 2013.
Cash flow development
The group’s cash position was € 10.1 million at year-end 2013 compared to € 5.9 million 2012. The company continues to focus on proper cash management. The cash flow from operations amounted to € 5.3 million positive in 2013 (2012: € 0.5 million negative). The increase is mainly the result of improved results and income tax received.
Personnel
The total number of employees in FTEs at end 2013 (751 FTE) was down 2.7% compared to end 2012 (772 FTE). This was largely related to the lower number of indirect employees. For 2014 we expect to grow in FTE in line with our revenue development.
Reporting
As per 1 January 2013, ICT’s strategy is focused primarily on verticals, with a secondary focus on country and regional/office level. Prior to the year under review, ICT reported its results on the basis of two ‘Operating Segments’, namely ICT the Netherlands and ICT Germany. Effective from the financial year 2013, ICT reports internally on the basis of the segments : Industrial Automation, Machine & Systems (including Healthcare en Energy), Logistics, Automotive, and the participation Improve Quality Services.
Strategy
The company will continue its strategy of offering innovative effective product/market solutions, enriched with state-of-the-art technology. Each vertical offers market specific solutions in which ICT has a high level of expertise, which allows the company to offer its clients greater added value. This puts ICT in a position to execute projects for its clients independently, making use of the specialist expertise and experience it has gained from previous assignments for its clients. As a result, ICT is able to realise innovative solutions for its clients that are also both repeatable and scalable.
Management changes
Mr. Jan Willem Wienbelt succeeded Mr. Anno Kamphuis as CFO a.i. as from 1 September 2013. Mr. Carlo D’Agnolo stepped down as CEO on 17 November 2013 and was succeeded by Mr. Jos Blejie on 1 December 2013. His permanent appointment as Statutory Director as well as the formal appointment of Mr. Jan Willem Wienbelt as member of the Executive Board and Statutory Director shall be notified to the Annual General Meeting on 21 May 2014.
Composition of the Supervisory Board
At the General Meeting on 21 May 2014, Mr. Jan Sinoo ́s term on the Board will expire. The Board will submit a proposal to the General Meeting to reappoint Mr. Jan Sinoo for a new 4 year term.
Dividend
It is proposed to the General Meeting of Shareholders that a dividend be paid out for the 2013 financial year at the amount of € 0.15 per share in cash based on the number of ordinary shares outstanding at year end 2013. This reflects the dividend policy of a payout ratio of 40% of the net profit. For 2013 this net profit was corrected for € 4.4 million of impairment loss and exceptional costs.
Significant events after the balance sheet date
In June DPA Group N.V. (DPA) announced that it had taken a 20.4% shareholding in the company and proposes to combine its business with ICT’s. After further discussions with DPA and further assessment of the various strategic options ICT has ceased further conversations with DPA regarding its proposal.
On 18 November 2013, ICT announced it had reached agreement with Brandfort B.V. (Brandfort) on a proposed acquisition of Brandfort. Brandfort is a medium-sized engineering company with 250 employees and annual revenue of € 16.7 million. ICT and Brandfort have an excellent strategic fit and the acquisition will lead to accelerated growth and offers both ICT and Brandfort access to a number of new clients and a stronger relationship with existing clients.
On 18 December 2013 the management and supervisory board of ICT received a letter of DPA in which they requested ICT to convene an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) with the proposed acquisition of Brandfort as voting item on the agenda.
ICT convened an EGM on 11 February 2014 with the proposed acquisition of Brandfort as informal voting as sole agenda item. 73% of the issued share capital was represented at the meeting. 53% of the share capital represented at the meeting voted in favour of the Brandfort transaction. After careful considerations of all remarks of the shareholders the Board decided to continue with the transaction.
Outlook
In 2013, ICT’s focus on Verticals and the continued reduction of indirect costs have had a positive impact on the performance and results of the company. The economic conditions slightly improved but remain challenging due to continued volatility. On the other hand, the range of measures that management took will be felt fully in 2014. We therefore expect 2014 to show a continued improvement in the operating profit from ordinary operations compared to 2013.
Operational developments
Automotive
The Automotive Vertical develops, sells and implements products and services throughout the entire automotive supply chain. Core business is developing embedded software for automotive systems in the infotainment and telematics market. New deals came from WABCO Automotive, LG Electronics, gConcepts.
Revenue at the Automotive Vertical was down 1.7% at € 19.1 million, from € 19.5 million, excluding € 1.4 million divested Neustadt operations, in 2012. Revenue at Automotive Germany amounted to € 13.5 million, a decrease of 5.7% compared to the previous year (€ 14.3 million, excluding € 1.4 million divested Neustadt operations). Revenue at Automotive Netherlands amounted to € 5.6 million, an increase of 9.5% compared to the previous year (€ 5.1 million).
Logistics
The Logistics vertical is largely active in port logistics and goods transport. Overall it has been a positive year for the Logistics Vertical, The investment in developing targeted propositions based on our new Supply Chain Platform paid off. At the same time investments in the team ensured that we are well equipped in all types of logistics such as harbour logistics and warehouse logistics. Overall we won more assignments and deals for PostNL (Cloud solution) Zuivelhoeve, Zeelandia and Fedex.
The revenue of the Logistics Vertical increased to € 9.3 million, from € 8.5 million in 2012, an increase of 10.1%, largely due to an increased demand from larger customers, leading to more assignments which resulted in a higher productivity.
Industrial Automation
As a system integrator, the activities of the Industrial Automation vertical are focused entirely on the implementation of software for primary processes. These are largely processes in the field of water management, plant automation in the Food & Feed industry and the continuous flow chemicals sector. Despite the volatile demand in these sectors, ICT has in the past few years been extremely successful in water management for semi-government organisations. This vertical has performed well over the past few years.
The vertical performed well thanks to increased customer demand. ICT acquired a number of new contracts, such as Waterschap Rijn en Ijssel, Plant One, CSi Industries and Hoogheemraadschap of Schieland and the Krimpenerwaard (HHSK) projects. Revenue increased by 9.0% to € 14.6 million, from € 13.4 million in 2012, due to an increased customer demand for projects, and as a result project related material purchases.
Machine & Systems
The Machine & Systems vertical focuses on the development of total solutions, a significant proportion of which consists of embedded software, as well as hardware. This vertical has also built up specific expertise in Calibration, Performance and Diagnostics (CPD) that it offers to the market as outsourcing services. In addition, the vertical has invested structurally in the development and successful delivery of an end-to-end Connected Devices solution, which provides a total solution, from Embedded right through to the Cloud.
The vertical Machine & Systems is mostly active in the OEM market. While we are facing price pressure from OEM-s, revenue went up 3.2% at € 28.2 million, from € 27.4 million in 2012, thanks to an increase in the overall demand for secondment and the number of projects and services delivered. In addition the vertical saw an increase in the number of direct employees and an improvement of productivity.
For ASML, ICT is now farming out the entire calibration arm, coming from being an outsourcing partner. ICT has made progress are made in connectivity services, a growth market in which we are able to deliver the full range of services.
We expanded our Healthcare operations, that are part of this vertical, last year through a long-term partnership with the PALGA foundation. We also established an international presence through the partnership with the Massachusetts General Hospital. The cooperation with our U.S. partner LogicNets will be key to the new Dutch and international contracts.
In the energy sector we, in collaboration with our partner GreenFlux, work on Smart Charging, which anticipates on the rising popularity of electric vehicles (EVs). In addition we have launched new pilots such as Smart Grid in Balance (with GreenFlux) and PowerMatching City with our partners Kema, TNO, Essent, Enexis and TU/e.
Improve Quality Services
Improve is active in the market for testing services, a segment that has in recent years proven particularly sensitive to reluctance to invest. The year 2013 was a difficult year for training. This market lagged behind expectations, however a small recovery could be seen in the second half of the year. The economic situation led to companies deciding to postpone or cancel training. In 2013 turnover mainly decreased in the area of training, especially in the first half of the year. Interim services and consultancy decreased slightly compared to 2012, due to a lack of highly qualified consultants. In 2013 revenue decreased by 10.6% to € 3.2 million.
InTraffic
The focus of the InTraffic business is on the public transport sector. A significant portion of InTraffic’s revenue is generated by development and maintenance activities for ProRail. Revenue at the InTraffic joint venture increased with 3.2% to € 6.9 million in a stable market. The operating result in 2013 has improved tremendously as a result of improved efficiency.
About ICT
ICT’s goal is to simplify and improve our clients’ business, production and communication processes and to make them more flexible. We do this by using our high-grade technological expertise. We deploy this expertise in the form of inventive and effective product and market combinations. ICT is organised in line with the markets we serve. Our verticals: Automotive, Industrial Automation, Logistics, Machine & Systems, Healthcare and Energy, offers professionals with specific know-how and expertise of a market’s products and processes. For more detailed information on ICT, visit our website at www.ict.eu.
For further Information:
Femmy de Rijk – Marketing & Communications ICT Automatisering N.V. Telephone: +31 (0)88 908 23 05 or +31 (0)6 10 51 3745. E-mail: Femmy.de.rijk@ict.nl Cautionary statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are always based on assumptions and estimates relating to uncertain events over which ICT Automatisering N.V. has no control. They concern, for example, measures taken by the Dutch and other governments, currency movements, price fluctuations, changes in law and regulations, legal precedents and market developments. ICT Automatisering N.V. would like to stress that the contents of this press release are based on the information that is currently available. The reality can always deviate from expectations for the future. ICT Automatisering N.V. has no obligation to update the statements contained in this document, unless required by law.
Auditor’s involvement
The full year 2013 and 2012 summary financial information, as set out on pages 8 to 11 of this press release has been derived from ICT Automatisering N.V.’s 2013 financial statements, as included in the 2013 Annual Report (the financial statements), which have not been published. In accordance with article 2:395 of the Netherlands Civil Code, we state that our auditor, Deloitte Accountants B.V., has issued an unqualified opinion on the financial statements.
For a better understanding of the company’s financial position and results and of the scope of the audit of Deloitte Accountants B.V., this report should be read in conjunction with the financial statements from which these summary financial statements have been derived and the auditor’s report of Deloitte Accountants B.V. thereon issued on March 12, 2014. We plan to publish the financial statements by including on the company’s website on April 7, 2014. The general meeting has not yet adopted the financial statements.
Annexes – Consolidated financial statements 2013:
– Consolidated statement of total comprehensive income
– Consolidated balance sheet
– Consolidated statement of changes in equity
– Consolidated statement of cash flows
– Other financial information

Click here to view ‘Annex Annual Results 2013’

Contact for media and press

Carla Stuifzand

Marketing Communications Director / Corporate Spokesperson

t +31 88 90 82 000

e carla.stuifzand@ict.nl

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