|MEDION AG, Essen (Germany)
Ad-hoc-Announcement, 13 November 2003
Sales having grown by 15.2 %, EBIT + 18.8 % after nine months
In the first nine months of the current business year, MEDION has achieved a sales volume of EUR 1,497.3 M (previous year: EUR 1,299.9 M). This corresponds to an increase of 15.2 %. In Germany, sales growth reached 5.4 % in the first nine months of 2003 in spite of a difficult economic environment. In the third quarter alone, sales grew even more by 8.3 %. We have been able to raise EBIT by 18.8 % from EUR 71.8 M to EUR 85.3 M. Compared to the previous year pre-tax earnings climbed by EUR 14.8 M from EUR 70.0 M the year before to EUR 84.8 M in 2003. Earnings per share improved by EUR 0.14 from EUR 0.89 to EUR 1.03.
Foreign exposure reached 35.8 % (previous year: 29.8 %) of total sales. In total MEDION has achieved foreign sales of EUR 535.6 M in 2003 (relevant period in 2002: EUR 387.0 M). This reflects an improvement of 38.4 %. The development on European markets has been particularly positive, while in the third quarter US business ran slower than projected.
MEDION has been able to raise both sales and earnings - permanently and steadily - by exclusively concentrating on the marketing of trend products. By focusing on technically sophisticated products with an excellent cost/benefit ratio we have succeeded in achieving solid sales success even in a difficult economic environment.
With regard to the current business year we have recently noticed a favourable order development. Therefore, we are convinced that our projected earnings targets will be fully realized this year. However, on a full year basis, group sales will rise at a rate of approximately 11 to 13 %, which is slower compared with profit growth. This reflects among other things dollar-induced price drops as well as shortages in key supply components which have occurred at short notice during the fourth quarter. The high underlying demand and the above mentioned trends concerning our clients and products make us optimistic to maintain double-digit growth rates again next year.