Volati’s Interim Report January–March 2021.
In the notice convening the 2020 AGM, the Board has proposed a distribution of the Bokusgruppen business area (formerly Akademibokhandeln). The income statements and balance sheets in the interim report below have therefore been restated in accordance with applicable financial reporting standards and exclude the operations of Bokusgruppen, which are reported separately as discontinued operations, with balance sheet items reported on a separate line as assets and liabilities held for distribution. The CEO’s review and comments about the business in this report focus on continuing operations.
Quarter January–March 2021
- Net sales increased by 22 percent to SEK 1,254 (1,028) million
- EBITA increased by 74 percent to SEK 102 (59) million
- EBITA for Bokusgruppen was SEK -7 (-3) million
- Profit after tax increased by 197 percent to SEK 66 (22) million
- Earnings per ordinary share increased by 617 percent to SEK 0.56 (0.08)
- The board has appointed Andreas Stenbäck as the new President and CEO, as of 1 May, 2021.
Events after the reporting period
- On 12 April, it was announced that, provided the AGM on 28 April 2021 adopts the distribution of shares in Bokusgruppen, Volati intends to redeem the outstanding bonds of 600 million in June 2021.
- An agreement to extend existing credit facilities of 1 200 million by 12 months to 15 March 2023 at unchanged terms has been reached.
Comments from the CEO.
A very strong first quarter. Ready for the next step on our growth journey.
Volati has reported another very strong quarter. Our Salix Group and Industry business areas achieved EBITA growth of just over 70 and 60 percent, respectively, in the first quarter. Volati’s total EBITA for the quarter, excluding Bokusgruppen, increased by 74 percent to SEK 102 (59) million.
Salix Group – strong position in a market with high demand.
In a Nordic market with strong demand driven by increased interest in renovation and gardening, Salix Group continues to obtain leverage from its strong brands, efficient logistics and good relationships with customers and suppliers. Sales and earnings for the period are high compared with the previous year. This is partly an effect of lower costs than normal in the quarter. We also experienced disruptions to supply chains during the quarter, which could potentially have a detrimental effect on margins ahead.
Salix has a good inflow of exciting acquisition opportunities and acquired Duschprodukter Sweden AB in the first quarter. Duschprodukter develops and markets a wide range of affordable accessories and interior design products for bathrooms. The acquisition strengthens and broadens the position of the HABO business unit as a supplier of bathroom products to the Nordic and Baltic markets.
Industry – Continuing growth.
Industry continues to deliver strong results. Sales have increased as a result of acquisitions and continuing high demand for the business units’ products. Earnings were particularly strong during the quarter compared with the same period the previous year. We are highly satisfied with the fine work being done in the business area and here too we see a good inflow of opportunities for add-on acquisitions that will enable continuing growth at a high rate.
During the quarter, we made one add-on acquisition when the Tornum business unit acquired the Finnish company JPT-Industria. The company supplies equipment to the Finnish agricultural and food industry. The acquisition broadens Tornum’s offering in grain handling while giving the company a stronger market position in the Nordic region and a platform for further internationalisation.
Bokusgruppen – good results with strong growth in digital channels.
Bokusgruppen reports a good first quarter, with a sales increase of 4 percent and strong growth in the digital channels. Earnings are weaker than in the previous year at SEK -7 (-3) million. More information about Bokusgruppen’s performance during the first quarter can found in the Bokusgruppen’s own interim report.
To give Bokusgruppen optimal opportunities for continuing growth, particularly in the digital channels, the Volati Board has proposed a distribution of Bokusgruppen to ordinary shareholders under Lex Asea rules. The proposal will be presented for resolution at the Volati Annual General Meeting.
Continuing to build Volati.
Volati has a successful and appropriate business model and EBITA has grown at an extremely high rate for many years (CAGR 38 percent from 2004). Our priority has always been to create long-term value for our shareholders. We are optimistic about the future and Volati’s opportunities to continue growing at a very high rate. During the quarter, we therefore implemented a number of changes to ensure that we deliver on these opportunities. We are giving Salix Group a clearer mandate by appointing a separate Board, thereby moving decisions closer to the business. The Volati Board proposes a distribution of Bokusgruppen, which will give them their own platform to continue creating digital growth. Our CFO Andreas Stenbäck, who has a long and successful career in corporate acquisitions, takes over as Volati CEO on 1 May.
Strong balance sheet.
An EGM held in February adopted a dividend of SEK 10.00 per ordinary share and a dividend of SEK 30.80 per preference share, including outstanding dividends of SEK 20.80 from 2020. In total, we paid dividends of SEK 843 million to our ordinary and preference shareholders during the quarter.
After the end of the quarter, we announced that, in connection with the proposed in-kind distribution of Volati’s shares in Bokusgruppen, we intend to call for early redemption of our outstanding bonds.
We have also entered into an agreement to extend the existing credit facilities and have received approval to go ahead with the proposed distribution of Bokusgruppen under the Lex Asea rules and within the framework of the existing credit facilities. All in all, this means that we reduce our financing costs and that we have a strong balance sheet with a low Net debt/EBITDA ratio of 0.8x, enabling us to deliver on the growth opportunities that exist and generate good returns for our shareholders.
Good start to the year.
In conclusion, I can say that the changes announced during the first quarter create the best possible conditions for Volati to continue delivering high growth and creating value for shareholders as we have done during recent years.
Mårten Andersson, President and CEO
Read more and download the full report here.