German PV equipment provider Manz AG said its sales increased by 11.6% to €296.9 million, while EBIT grew by more than €35 million to €1.7 million. However, due to €5.1 million in damages from a fire at a production site in Taiwan, it incurred an operating loss of €3.4 million.
Nevertheless, CEO Martin Drasch sees a turnaround and claims the company’s business model is geared to return it to profitability. Over the long term, the goal is to return to EBIT margins of around 10%. In the current financial year, its product portfolio will be expanded to include standardized technological modules that can be flexibly combined in a wide range of systems, according to individual customer requirements.
For the current year, the company expects significant order increases in the energy storage and electronics segments. As for its PV business, Manz also expects follow-up orders for its CIGS technology from the end of this year. Its total order backlog was €215.2 million by the end of 2018. It is now forecasting a 10-14% jump in sales this year and is aiming for a positive EBIT margin in the low single-digit percentage range.
Higher sales are expected in all segments, with the exception of the solar business. Due to the level of progress made with its major CIGS projects, the Manz executive board is assuming poor sales. In addition, expected follow-up orders will probably not affect sales this year. Last year, solar made a significant contribution to improving the company's operating results, with a segment profit of €14.4 million.
Singulus reports 39.8% revenue growth
Meanwhile, Singulus Technologies — another German PV equipment provider — has also reported an increase in revenue for 2018, with turnover growing by 39.8% to €127.5 million. EBIT increased to €6.8 million last year, while net profit rose year-on-year to €0.8 million.
The company’s solar segment reported revenue of €98.5 million for 2018, from €64.8 million a year earlier, and an EBIT of €5.4 million, from €2.1 million.
“The solar market will remain the most important market for Singulus Technologies in the medium term,” the company said in its 2018 Annual Report. “We are optimistic about the future and we are on our way to further expanding our market leadership for CIGS production plants.”
The company is now in the process of introducing new production equipment concepts for its highly efficient crystalline solar cells, and sees great potential for the future. For the current fiscal year, it expects revenue and earnings to continue to increase. Sales will likely range between €135 million and €155 million in 2019, while EBIT should improve to about €6 million to €11 million. Sales and earnings growth will likely be driven by the solar segment, it said, in addition to large project orders for investments in CIGS production lines.
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