Manz has recorded growing solar bookings to kick off 2015, although its overall performance for Q1 remains below that of 2014. Revenues of 54 million ($60.8 million) were booked, resulting in a 6.4 million ($7.2 million) EBITDA loss. This represents a year-on-year (Y/Y) decrease in revenue of 200,000 ($225,000) and increasing losses by some 6.2 million ($7 million).
Manz has attributed the declining revenues to orders being delayed towards the end of 2014 and the increased Y/Y loss to expenses resultant from its Manz Italy acquisition and integration. Manz acquired Kemet Electronic Italy in April 2014, bringing in house Kemets battery production expertise. Kemet has been renamed Manz Italy.
On the positive side of the Q1 results, Manz has recorded growing solar and storage revenues, with solar bookings increasing Y/Y from 2.4 million ($2.7 million) to 6.9 million ($7.8 million) in solar and 1.2 million ($1.35 million) to 16.5 million ($18.6 million) in storage. Solar and storage represented 12.8% and 30.6% of total revenues for Q1 2015, up from 4.5% and 2.3% Y/Y respectively.
While a relatively small order, one storage highlight for Q1 was a booking for lithium-ion battery welding equipment from a U.S.-based producer, most likely Tesla.
The order situation in the Energy Storage business sector is developing very dynamically, said Manz CEO Dieter Manz, in a statement. As expected, our first quarter is primarily characterized by the low order intake in the last quarter of 2014. In addition there was a postponement of several major orders that thus could not contribute to the revenues of the first three months.
Manz added that with a current order backlog of 92 million ($103.7 million), that the company has not changed its full year revenue and profit outlook, despite the week quarter.
The company, based in Germanys south, has also renamed two of its three business units, with the former Display and Battery business units becoming Electronics, and Energy Storage. The solar business unit, which has performed poorly in recent years, retains the name Solar. Despite positive signs last year, Manz is still yet to have made a sale of its turnkey CIGSfab.
Manz reports liquid funds of 62 million ($69.9 million) at the end of the quarter, with 2015 expected to deliver very positive EBIT.