Mar 23, 2016
Lenzing proposes to double 2015 dividend
Mar 23, 2016
Thanks to a strong operational performance in 2015, Austria-based speciality fibres producer Lenzing Group has proposed to pay a dividend of €2 per share, double the payout in 2014.
“The Lenzing Group significantly improved just about all relevant economic and balance sheet indicators in 2015 compared to its business results in 2014,” a Lenzing press release stated.
Consolidated revenue climbed by 6.0 per cent year over year to €1.98 billion, driven by higher fibre selling prices, the growing share of specialty fibres in its product mix and positive exchange rate effects.
In 2015, EBITDA improved to €290.1 million, up 20.7 per cent from the prior-year figure of €240.3 million, corresponding to an EBITDA margin of 14.7 per cent as against 12.9 per cent in 2014.
EBIT for the reporting year increased to €151.1 million from €21.9 million, corresponding to an EBIT margin of 7.6 per cent vis-à-vis 1.2 per cent in the prior year.
Earnings per share in the 2015 financial year rose to €4.63, up from a negative €0.51 per share in 2014.
On the basis of this good financial performance, the management board will propose distribution of a dividend of €2.00 per share for 2015, double the dividend for 2014.
“We made substantial progress in 2015, and delivered the promised improvements to our business operations,” CEO Stefan Doboczky said.
“We strategically realigned the company, improved the earnings and cost structure and enhanced our financial strength,” he added.
“We also expect a considerable rise in earnings once again in 2016 provided that the underlying business framework does not significantly change,” Doboczky stated.
Lenzing further added that it boasts a solid balance sheet structure which was further optimised in the course of the 2015 financial year.
Adjusted equity climbed 15 per cent to €1.23 billion in the reporting year as against €1.07 billion in 2014 and adjusted equity ratio amounted to 50.6 per cent, the highest level since 2006.
As on December 31, 2015, net financial debt was sharply reduced 27.0 per cent to €327.9 million versus €449.5 million as on December 31, 2014.
Accordingly, the ratio of net financial debt to EBITDA declined from 1.9 at the end of 2014 to 1.1 at the end of 2015.
“The return on capital generated by the Lenzing group improved thanks to the positive earnings development,” the Austrian company informed.
“As a result, the return on capital employed (ROCE) grew to 8.0 per cent, compared to a negative 0.1 per cent in the previous year, while return on equity (ROE) rose to 13.0 per cent, up from 0.7 per cent.
In its outlook for 2016, Lenzing informed that the volatile development prevailing in the global fibre market is expected to continue.
Assuming unchanged conditions in the fibre market and currency exchange rates, Lenzing expects further improvements in earnings in 2016 compared to 2015.
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