German PV equipment makers report fall in revenue


From pv magazine Germany.

German PV production equipment provider Manz AG posted sales of €132.8 million in the first half of this year, less than in the same period of 2018. The company said it was unable to maintain first-quarter momentum because of delays in securing new orders, especially in the energy storage segment. As a result, sales in the second quarter totaled €56 million, around 25% down on April-to-June last year.

Losses before interest and taxes reduced by €1.1 million in the first half, to €3.4 million and the EBITDA earnings figure – which also considers depreciation and amortization – came in at a positive €5.7 million in the six-month period.

Manz’s solar business experienced declining sales in the first half due to a delay in the start of installation of a CIGS equipment order for an unnamed customer, with possible follow-up orders also held up. Solar generated sales of €22.1 to the end of June, down significantly from the €69.3 million figure from the same period of last year. Solar division EBIT declined to a similar extent but remained positive, at €2.2 million.

CEO Martin Drasch said the results were due to measures taken to further develop the business model and product portfolio.

The tide will turn

“It is of course disappointing that we were unable to continue this positive trend in the second quarter due to order delays,” he said. The PV equipment supplier does appear to be on the path to profitability with the board forecasting positive EBIT in the low single-digit percentage range this year.

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Manz has lowered its sales forecast, however, and now expects revenues to be slightly lower than those reported last year.

Equipment supplier rival Singulus Technologies AG posted sales of €44.1 million in the first six months, a figure slightly down from the €46.4 million reported in the first half of last year.

However the company saw EBIT swing from a loss of €1.2 million in the first half of last year to a profit of €1.6 million in the latest reporting period, with EBITDA rising significantly, to €3.6 million.

Singulus said it was confident about business development in the second half and expects a significant increase in sales and EBIT, even though order intake in the first half was well below the €27.1 million booked in the same period of 2018. The order backlog stood at €49 million at the end of June.

In the PV segment, Singulus is relying mainly on CIGS manufacturing equipment, for which it expects new orders soon.

“It is the goal to continue to exploit this potential and we expect to complete the currently delayed signing of contracts in a timely manner,” said CEO Stefan Rinck.

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