Research, Charts & Company Announcements
Research Tree provides access to ongoing research coverage, media content and regulatory news on SGS. We currently have 14 research reports from 2 professional analysts.
SGS’s FY19 results came in broadly in line with consensus at the top line, while it beats expectations on the net profit and FCF. The group’s cost measures seem to bear fruit, and improved profitability, combined with a higher return to shareholders with a 2.5% increase in dividend to CHF80. SGS is a must-have stock as it is a leading TIC company, with a good diversification in its business lines and a healthy balance sheet.
As part of its Capital Markets Day, SGS reaffirmed its 2020 EBITA margin to be above 17%, while for this year organic growth should be lower than expected, due to the challenging macro environment. Management also presented Asia as being a very interresting area for its long-term growth, driven by production shifts with new business in certification.
SGS’s H1 results came in marginally below expectations on organic revenue growth. Despite a +20bp IFRS16 positive effect, postponed payments in GIS impacted the margin development in H1. Thus, the second half should benefit from the collection of these payments. Management remains confident and continues to see robust divisional developments going forward. The downside in our view is related to the M&A strategy which is not aggressive enough to meet the 2020 commitments, especially on the 17% margin target.
At first glance, SGS delivered a solid performance in 2018, but we are not convinced. Since the start of the 2020 Plan, SGS has acquired CHF300m of revenue, which is far from the billion CHF target over 2016-20. Even though the group expects to accelerate its M&A activities, there still remains much to be done.
SGS delivered H1 results broadly in line with expectations, showing a better-than-expected organic growth (+5.6% vs +4.9% cons), but a touch light on margins (14.6% at cc vs 14.8% cons). The bottom line is mainly affected by exceptional items (c. CHF50m restructuring charge in IND and provisions for cumulative overstated revenues reported in prior periods in Brazil). Key highlights: Revenue growth of +8.5% to CHF3.31bn (+5.6% org, +0.9% acq, +2.0% FX) Increase in adjusted operating income of +9.2% resulting in 14.6% adjusted operating margin (+40bp gain yoy) Profit for the period increased by 1.0%, up to CHF296m Investment of CHF181m in capex and acquisitions Free cash flow of CHF176m Both short-term and mid-term guidance are reiterated: 2018 (qualitative) guidance: solid organic revenue growth, higher adjusted operating margin and robust cash flow. 2020 outlook: mid single-digit organic growth, acquired revenue over the 2016-20 period of CHF1bn and adjusted operating margin of at least 18%.
Revenue and earnings growth continued in 2017. Dividend per share increased by 7.1% from CHF70 to CHF75. The operating performance is expected to improve further in the current year. M&A activities will be accelerated.
The company reported half year results (no quarterly reporting available). In the first half year, revenues increased 5% to CHF3.05bn (estimate +3.1%). EBIT improved 4.1% (estimate 5.9%) to CHF394m and the EBIT margin declined marginally from 13.6% to 13.5%. EBITDA also increased by 4.4% to CHF570m and the EBITDA margin declined from 13.6% to 13.5%. Net income improved 7% to CHF276m. Management confirmed guidance for the current year.
SGS reported final 2016 results. Revenues increased 4.8% to CHF5.99bn and 6% on a constant currency basis. Acquisitions contributed around 3.5% to revenue growth and 2.5% was organic growth. The operating performance of the company, however, was not really exciting. EBITDA increased 0.7% to CHF1.15bn and real EBIT declined marginally by 0.7% to CHF816m. The EBITDA margin dropped from 20% to 19.2% and the EBIT margin from 14.4% to 13.6%. The adjusted operating margin also declined from 16.1% to 15.4%. During the year, the company completed 19 smaller acquisitions and invested around CHF193m. Net debt increased from CHF482m to €736m. The board of directors proposed a dividend of CHF70 per share (increase of CHF2 from €68). Management also initiated a share buy-back programme worth CHF250m.
SGS is planning to grow the business by digitalising its activities. The company already has minority stakes or partnerships in tech companies such as Savi, Agflow and Sensima Inspection. The first priority will be information, systems and platforms followed by technology integration, analytics (predictive maintenance, asset tracking) and cybersecurity. In addition, the strong regional focus should increase the footprint in the largest market China. In 2016, the company had over 120 locations with more than 125 laboratories and 14,000 employees. The total TIC market is estimated to be around CHF25bn. Growth is mainly driven by e-commerce (contract with Alibaba), food and environmental testing.
The company reported first half year results (no quarterly results available). Revenues increased 5.4% and 7% at constant currency of which 3.6% organic and 3.4% acquisition driven. Management acquired ten companies for a total of CHF99m. These companies contributed CHF99m to revenues and CHF1m to the operating performance. EBIT jumped 18.3% to CHF394m and the EBIT margin increased from 12.1% to 13.6%. The operating performance excluding restructuring charges of CHF64m in 2015 remained unchanged. EBITD declined from CHF577m to CHF563m. The market expected EBITDA to reach CHF587m.
The company reported final 2015 numbers. Revenues declined by 2.9% to CHF5.7bn but increased by 3.6% based on constant currency. Organic growth was 2% and 1.6% driven by acquisitions. The company faced a difficult environment especially due to the strengthening of the Swiss Franc against major currencies and the fall in commodity prices. Adjusted EBITDA reached CHF1.19bn and increased by 3.4% at constant currency. Real EBITDA however declined by 8.1% to CHF1.14bn. The EBITDA margin declined from 21.2% to 20%. EBIT dropped by 12.7% to CHF822 and the EBIT margin declined from 16% to 14.4%. Net income also dropped by 12.7%, and stood at CHF549m compared to CHF629m in 2014. The dividend will remain unchanged from the prior year at CHF68 per share.
On its capital markets day in Chile/Peru, management announced some minor changes within the group. The regional structure will be optimised from 10 to 8 to improve efficiency. The business in Northern and Central Europe will be merged with Southern Central Europe. Central America will beintegrated into South America. In addition, management will merge three Asian regions down to two by the end of 2016. Management is also planning to increase the footprint in North America and China. In North America, acquisitions will be the key element to drive the expansion of the business. In China, management will shift from exports to the local market. Strong growth is expected in Industrial, Food and Transportation. In addition, the company launched a focused programme to reduce costs. One operational business model, three shared service centres across the world and a team of 1,500 employees should help to reduce the cost base by at least CHF20m per year. Another efficiency programme (procurement savings) was launched and is expected to save CHF180m between 2015 and 2017. Furthermore, the net working capital, which will remain the key driver of the operating cash flow, will be structurally improved. In January 2014, the company changed its dividend policy. The dividend of CHF65 per share is the floor for 2013 up to 2016. For the current year, we expect a dividend of at least CHF68 per share. Around CHF500m of the share buy-back programme of CHF750m will be used for share cancellations.
The company reported half year results. Revenues declined 1.9% to CHF2.75bn mainly due to the strength of the Swiss franc. At constant currency revenues increased 3.4%, of which 1.8% was derived from organic growth and 1.6% from acquisitions. The lower than expected growth was mainly impacted by reduced and delayed capex from the oil and mining industries. The Environmental Services, consumer testing services and automotive services were the main contributors to revenue growth. EBIT declined 16.1% to CHF333m and the EBIT margin reached 12.1% compared to 14.2% in H1 14. Adjusted EBIT including restructuring charges and other less pleasant cost items declined 1.9% to CHF412m. The adjusted EBIT margin remained stable at 15%. Net income also dropped 16.1% to CHF214m. The company issued two bonds with a total volume of CHF550m. The CHF325m bond with a coupon of 0.25% will mature in 2023 and the second bond with a total volume of CHF225m with a coupon of 0.875% will mature in 2030.
Research Tree provides access to ongoing research coverage, media content and regulatory news on SGS. We currently have 14 research reports from 2 professional analysts.
Red Dwarf, the very British sci-fi comedy franchise, ran for 11 seasons – most recently in 2017; and The Promised Land is a feature-length TV movie – out this year. Yes, the programme is an acquired taste. Strangely, too, many episodes are impacted by a virus or three (physiological, not main-frame).
Companies: WJG BKG CSP CRST MCS INL BDEV RDW GLE SPR TW/ PSN VTY GLV CRN ABBY BWY
Flowtech has released an update post its Q1 detailing the impact from COVID-19 and the actions the Board has taken. Trading over the first three months of FY20 was in line with guidance provided in the February update. However, the impact of COVID-19 in the final few weeks indicate that trading in the early part of Q2 will be impacted. Currently revenue is 30% below expectations with the potential for a further deterioration. The statement indicates that the business is relatively resilient and that a sustained 35% fall in revenue would leave the business breakeven, on the assumption that Government support in the UK, Netherlands and the Republic of Ireland is utilised. Balance sheet liquidity is c. £9.4m on £25.0m facilities recently extended to June 2021. In addition, and in line with what many companies have announced, the final dividend for FY19, ZC estimate 4.3p, will be suspended to conserve cash. We leave forecasts in FY20 and FY21 unchanged for the time being, until there is greater clarity on trading.
Companies: Flowtech Fluidpower
Companies: AVO AGY ARBB ARIX BUR CMH CLIG DNL GDR HAYD PCA PIN PHP RE/ RECI RMDL STX SHED VTA
The developing coronavirus pandemic has affected year-end trading for Norcros, with an indicated c £4m impact on EBIT. Operational shutdowns mirroring those of its customers have been undertaken and, as elsewhere, actions to preserve cash are being taken. The company has up to c £110m headroom under existing banking facilities representing a strong year end liquidity position. Forward guidance and our estimates for FY21 onwards have been withdrawn pending greater clarity on the scale and duration of the lockdown conditions being widely enacted currently.
XP Power’s Q1 trading update confirmed that revenues increased 4% y o y/q o q and the Chinese facility has returned to normal staffing levels. Strong demand, mainly from healthcare customers, saw a 25% q o q increase in orders and a Q1 book-to-bill of 1.49x. Despite strong Q1 demand, the level of uncertainty surrounding both supply and demand for the rest of the year has caused XP to cancel its previously proposed Q419 dividend in order to preserve cash. We maintain our revenue forecasts, but factor in higher costs in FY20 and remove our Q419 and Q120 dividend estimates.
Companies: XP Power
Anexo’s trading update confirms that FY 2019E adjusted PBT will be in line with market expectations but that forward guidance is withdrawn given the current uncertainty over COVID-19 – although trading so far in FY-2020 looks relatively unaffected. Accordingly, we make no changes to our FY 2019E numbers and withdraw those for future years until the outlook is clearer. The timing of the FY 2019E results announcement will be confirmed in due course. Like others, Anexo is taking measures to preserve cash. Crucially, it continues to operate as an essential business under the current government restrictions. Staff are following the appropriate guidelines while providing a service to many key workers. Obviously, there is uncertainty over the long term impact of COVID-19 and therefore the focus on collections remains vital. In our view, the group remains in a strong position to drive cash out of its backlog of cases without necessarily committing further new working capital.
SThree reported an in-line Q1 (to Feb) just three weeks ago. A lot has changed since then and, given the impact of COVID-19, the company is withdrawing its earnings guidance. We cut FY20E EBIT by 57%, assuming a more protracted impact than previously. With various measures in place to enhance liquidity (including cancelling the FY19 final dividend), we expect the balance sheet to remain net cash in FY20E, even in a worse case scenario. The longer-term investment thesis is unchanged. SThree’s differentiated STEM/contract focus exposes it to secular growth trends. CY20E EV/EBIT 14.4x. TP cut from 400p to 270p. Maintain Buy.
Companies: SThree Plc
Northbridge Industrial Services (“Northbridge”) has produced preliminary results that were ahead of expectations across several metrics. The Group achieved a significant milestone in returning to profitability for the first time in five years. Margins continue their upward trajectory, aided by the high levels of operational gearing. Geographical expansion continued, following the opening of new depots in Singapore (Tasman) and Pennsylvania (Crestchic).
Companies: Northbridge Industrial Services
The games industry is a rare example of a sector set for a good crisis. With billions of extra leisure hours available daily and quick adjustment to distributed working, many games developers and publishers are seeing strong revenue and margin growth. In this report, we compare business models across geographies and look at how different segments of the market may be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The general pre-crisis backdrop was a sector forecast to grow at c 8.4% (2019–22), reaching a total market size of $190bn by 2022. Mobile gaming offers a low double-digit revenue CAGR, while PC and console gaming offer single-digit growth as we move towards console transition this year. In the first few months of the year, business disruption was mainly confined to China and the Far East, with concerns over supply chains and stock levels to the fore in the West. Since then, the reality of a global COVID-19 pandemic has emerged, with more than a third of the global population in lockdown today. The transition from offices to remote working has caused significant business disruption, but for most games companies the disruption has been effectively managed with business continuity plans now largely implemented. Looking ahead, we expect consumers will be isolated from normal activities and other forms of entertainment for at least three to six months; while it lasts, this period will provide a substantial benefit for games companies. Although the virtual reality industry might suffer supply issues and console launches will be softer (initially), the net effect of the pandemic is set to be sector positive. The small-cap European games sector offers exposure to a number of well-run, innovative businesses, with recurring revenue models that will benefit from increased consumer demand fulfilled digitally. The following companies are featured in the research: 11 bit studios, Astralis, Bigben Interactive, CD Projekt, Codemasters, Digital Bros, Embracer, Focus Home, Frontier Developments, G5 Entertainment, Gfinity, MTG, Nacon, Paradox Interactive, PlayWay, Remedy Entertainment, Rovio Entertainment, Starbreeze, Stillfront Group, Sumo Group, Team17 and Ubisoft Entertainment.
Companies: Keywords Studios
RA's core business activity is the provision of remote site and mission critical life support services in many challenging locations around the world, often in very difficult circumstances. RA remains well placed to continue to operate successfully during this Covid-19 uncertainty though in recent days it has become clear that some customer projects will be delayed. With the timing of delivery of some contracts in 2020 uncertain we are temporarily withdrawing our 2020 forecast. With its rapid deployment capability, RA has coped well with contract delays before. Recent FY19 guidance has indicated revenue ahead of expectations, demonstrating a significant delivery of revenue during H2/19 vs H1/19. We remain Buyers given RA's demonstrably strong balance sheet, NGO, governmental and global corporation client base. Given its operating capabilities with long-term supply chain planning, we anticipate RA should quickly return to normal operating levels once the Covid-19 spread and resultant restrictions subside.
Companies: RA International
Volution has announced that it has started to furlough workers in the UK as activity starts to drop off. However, the group has also reported that it is seeing a baseline of activity continuing and expects this to persist.
Companies: Volution Group
Full year results – a transitional year culminating in a record order book Journeo is a specialist provider of both on and off-vehicle tailored solutions to the transport community. FY 2019A illustrated significant progress for the company, culminating with £9.0m of new orders, secured in the later stages of the year, giving substantial visibility with respect to FY 2020E. In addition, the £1.2m placing in December, for working capital purposes, significantly strengthened the balance sheet, and should be of great comfort given the broader global macro-economic backdrop. The FY 2019A results, announced today, largely reflect a business in transition, the adjusted loss before tax of £0.9m reflecting the previously flagged pressures in Fleet Systems. Whilst the current backdrop brings with it the potential for delays to new contracts, the group benefits from its highest level of secured work in its history and with further opportunities continuing to be presented under high-profile government initiatives. As such, at this stage we leave our forecasts unchanged. Our estimate of fair value stands at 75p.