Sweden-headquartered Bulten has recorded a positive Q1, with net sales up 9.6% on the same period last year, reaching SEK 853 (778) million.
Order bookings amounted to SEK 779 (720) million, an increase of 8.2% on the same period last year. Earnings after tax amounted to SEK 48 (51) million. Operating earnings (EBIT) totaled SEK 67 (63) million, equating to an operating margin of 7.8% (8.1).
“New growth phase”
Tommy Andersson, President and CEO, commented: “The outcome of the first quarter confirmed that Bulten is in a new growth phase, with higher net sales and order bookings of 9.6% and 8.2% respectively. The growth is an effect of an increase in previously announced contracts and a major model shift at a customer, which is now in full production.
“The operating margin was 7.8% during the quarter. Profitability was affected negatively by higher global market prices for steel and other metals as well as an uneven rate of production, but was partly balanced out by positive currency effects.”
New surface treatment in Germany & automotive growth prospects
“Bulten’s financial position remains strong, and we are well equipped to meet both the higher demand for our products and the increased rate of investment. The investments lay the foundation to ensure our future growth takes place with continued high quality and good profitability. Bulten’s new surface treatment at the German unit is now up and running, with gradually increasing volumes.
“We have long-standing contracts and a strong position in our niche, and Bulten’s long-term growth opportunities are looking good, with incoming volumes from previously announced contracts worth just over SEK 0.5 billion annually when full production is reached in 2020. Furthermore, the development toward more hybrid and electric cars works in our favor, as more fasteners will be needed for each car due to new materials and powertrains. We also deem our prospects good to win new business.”
Last year, Bulten invested in a new production and logistics plant in Poland.