German security technology company Mühlbauer has reported a positive start to the new financial year, with sales reaching 37.3 million euros, up 48.3% on the same period last year.
Gross profits on sales were 17.5 million euros, up 62.5% on last year’s 10.8 million euros. Earnings before interest and tax climbed from 2.4 million euros to 7.9 million euros. And earnings before tax more than tripled from 2.7 million euros to 8.5 million euros.
These figures resulted in a first quarter pre-tax profit margin of 22.8% compared with the previous year’s 10.7%. The company says that, after taxes, another 5.6 million euros can be transferred to retained earnings, equating to a ratio of earnings per share of 0.39 euros.
A greater amount of capital commitment for accounts receivables and scheduled advance tax payments resulted in a decrease of free cash flow from 5.3 million euros in the previous year, compared to 1.5 million euros for this reporting period.
Increased business volumes resulted in an increase in net working capital from 22.9 million euros to 29.8 million euros.
Mühlbauer reports positive order books for the first quarter, with order income reaching 37.8 million euros, up 5.3% on last year. Most of its business segments reported a rise in incoming orders. However, orders at its SmartID core business fell slightly to 17.6 million euros. This was broadly in line with expectations, which it says is a result of a slowdown in the demand for RFID smart labels. According to the company, this slowdown has been triggered by an unbalanced supply and demand ratio and new developments in the chip technology, as well as existing infrastructure deficits.
Its Semiconductor Related Products contributed 12.2 million euros to order income, an 82% increase on last year’s figure of 6.7 million euros. Its Traceability sector saw order income almost double to 3.8 million euros. And its Precision Parts and Systems had an order income of 4.2 million euros, an increase of 22.7% on last year.
The order backlog at the end of the reporting period stood at 80.8 million euros and was 4.7% higher than the comparable value last year.
Mühlbauer has been awarded contracts for the personalisation of the Portuguese and Slovenian ePassports. However, it told SDW it is unable to comment further on the details of these deals at this stage.