Conergy’s Q1 financials reflect restructuring progress

Following production closures at its Frankfurt (Oder) facility last September, which involved the loss of 300 jobs, and poor 2011 financial figures, Conergy is finally stepping up its game. While Q1 2012 sales were negatively affected by the continuation of falling module prices – they were said to be 40 percent lower year-on-year – the photovoltaic company has seen overall improvements.
In Q1 2012, the company’s sales were €98 million, down from €163 million in Q1 2011. Shipments also fell from 80 megawatts (MW) in Q1 2011, to 70 MW in Q1 2012. "Shipments increased in the German market as well as in the Asian and American growth markets. In Europe, however, volumes decreased, leading to an overall decline of shipments," it explained in a statement released.
Overall, it says Q1 2012 sales in Europe amounted to €65 million, compared to a €121 million in Q1 2011. The financial and debt crisis, and a poor access to credit were cited as the main reasons.
In terms of gross profit margin, Conergy said it remained stable from Q1 2011, to Q1 2012, at 21 percent. EBITDA, meanwhile, improved from €-12 million in Q1 2011, to €-8 million in Q1 2012. EBIT also increased, from €-18 million to €-12 million in the same period, as did net loss, which went from €-22 million to €-15 million.
Continuing the positive news, Conergy said it achieved a net cash flow of €5 million in Q1 2012, significantly up from €-57 million in Q1 2011. This represents the first time that it generated a positive net cash flow, since its initial public offering (IPO) in 2005.
"Subsidy discussions in Europe as well as the ongoing debt crisis have impacted our sales in the first quarter," commented CEO, Philip Comberg. "The second quarter has started well, and compared to the start of the year we can see a positive development of shipments and sales. Thanks to the effects from the restructuring measures we are right on track and are cautiously optimistic, that we can achieve the goals we have set."
For 2012, Conergy’s management predicts lower year-on-year sales and a low, positive, EBITDA.