Q4 2015 Best year ever - second year in a row!
AKVA group has completed the best fourth quarter ever. Revenue in Q4 2015 ended on 344 MNOK (305 MNOK) with an EBITDA of 27 MNOK (13 MNOK). Fourth quarter EBITDA margin was 7.9% (4.4%). All business segments have made positive contributions to the fourth quarter result. Financially this is the best year ever for AKVA group for the second year in a row. The order backlog is also the highest ever. A dividend of NOK 1.00 per share was paid in Q4 2015.
"AKVA group have completed yet another strong quarter and year. We have over the last year's transformed AKVA group to become broader and more diversified. As a result of this transformation all our three business segments now contribute to the good financial performance", says CEO of AKVA group ASA Trond Williksen.
Cage Based Technology (CBT)
Nordic CBT had a decent performance in Q4, which traditionally is a low season quarter in Nordic CBT segment. The performance was driven by a slightly different product mix compared to 2014, i.e. a wider range of products contribute to revenue and profit in 2015 vs 2014. Chile has completed one of the best years ever margin vice in 2015 due to reduced cost base and higher level of service sales.
Canada had a good fourth quarter and ended their best year ever. Canada is a lean and efficient operation. Australia continues to be a small but profitable operation. They also completed their best year ever. UK ended their best year ever and continues to have high a level of OPEX based revenue. Turkey had their best year ever and is experiencing increased activity in the Sea Bass and Sea Bream industry. Export to emerging markets experienced a slow quarter. Emerging markets are dominated by few but large contracts and this gives variations in the P&L quarter by quarter.
AKVA group Software AS continues to deliver stable and high margins, with improved revenue and margins year on year. Wise lausnir ehf also continues with improved performance year on year. Software continues to invest in new product modules, which is expected to strengthen the financial performance of the software segment further.
Land Based Technology (LBT)
LBT was 25% of total Group revenue in the fourth quarter and LBT delivered a 9.8% EBITDA in Q4. This is due to a significant improved performance year on year and quarter on quarter. Plastsveis AS is on track with good performance in 2015. Aquatec Solutions A/S was included in the Group P&L from Q4 and onwards. Aquatec had good performance as expected. AKVA group Denmark A/S had a decent quarter, but there is still potential for further improvements financially. The land based segment ends the quarter with a good order backlog.
We have experienced continued good market activity throughout the second half of 2015 and this has been the best second half in terms of order inflow ever for AKVA group of MNOK 854 (MNOK 661). The order inflow in Q4 2015 was 350 MNOK (460 MNOK). The order backlog at the end of Q4 2015 was 649 MNOK (504 MNOK). This is the highest order backlog ever for AKVA group.
The balance remain strong. Working capital in percentage of 12 months rolling revenue is 8.8% (10.1%). We are able to maintain low working capital despite record high activity. Cash and unused credit facilities amounted to record high 160 MNOK at the end of Q4 (144 MNOK).Total assets and total equity amounted to 1,070 MNOK (904 MNOK) and 428 MNOK (389 MNOK) respectively, resulting in an equity ratio of 40% (43%) at the end of Q4.
Dividend of NOK 1.00 per share paid in Q4 2015
The Company's main objective is to maximize the return on the investment made by its shareholders through both increased share prices and dividend payments. According to the AKVA group ASAs' dividend policy a dividend of 1.00 NOK per share was paid in November 2015. Total dividend pay out in November 2015 was 25.7 MNOK.
We have a good mid term outlook due to high market activity and the large order backlog. The activity level is particularly high in the Nordic market segment. The strong demand in the Nordic cages based segment continues into the new year, with a shift towards sale of technology for more efficient production. The land based segment has experienced increased activity in 2015 and this higher level of activity is expected to continue. The land based segment is becoming a larger part of AKVA group. UK and Canada experience slightly less project sales so far in the new year compared to last year, but both entities are still expected to perform well. We have continued low expectations in Chile due to the challenging situation for our Chilean customers. Our exposure in Chile is reduced over the last years. Our Turkey and Australian operations are expected to continue to perform well in the next quarters with a good order backlog. Exports to emerging markets have a more optimistic start of the year than last year. The activity is still expected to fluctuate due to the nature of the business. We continue our effort to build service and after sales as a key business element in all markets and segments
About AKVA group
AKVA group is a technology and service partner to the aquaculture industry worldwide. The company has around 670 employees, offices in 8 countries and a total turnover of NOK 1.4 billion in 2015. We are a public listed company operating in one of the world's fastest growing industries and supply everything from single components to complete installations, both for cage farming and land based aquaculture. AKVA group is recognized as a pioneer and technology leader through more than 30 years. The Corporate Headquarter is in Bryne Norway.
Dated: 19 February 2016
AKVA group ASA
Trond Williksen Chief Executive Officer
Phone: +47 51 77 85 00
Mobile: +47 91 63 01 73
Eirik Børve Monsen Chief Financial Officer
Phone: +47 51 77 85 00
Mobile: +47 91 63 98 31