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Suominen Corporation's Interim Report for January 1 - June 30, 2015: Net sales, operating profit and profit for the period at record-high level

Highlights in April-June 2015:

- Net sales increased by 19% and amounted to EUR 112.9 million (95.3).
- Operating profit excluding non-recurring items increased by 80% to EUR 9.9 million (5.5).
- Suominen confirmed that it will invest in a new wetlaid production line at its Bethune plant, SC, USA.
- Suominen repeats its estimate, announced on 27 April 2015, according to which Suominen expects that for the full year 2015, its net sales and operating profit excluding non-recurring items from continuing operations will improve from year 2014. Suominen’s net sales of the continuing operations in 2014 amounted to EUR 401.8 million and operating profit excluding non-recurring items was EUR 26.9 million.

President & CEO Nina Kopola comments on Suominen’s second quarter of 2015:

“The consumer confidence index in the euro area took a slight downward trajectory in the second quarter, following a brisk rise in the early part of the year. However, the index’s level in June clearly exceeded its level at the beginning of the year. In the United States the performance of the consumer confidence index was positive throughout the quarter. North America and Europe are Suominen’s largest market areas.

In light of financial key figures, Suominen had a very strong Q2. Thanks to the strengthening of the dollar and a brisker demand in the European markets than in the comparison period, the company’s net sales grew by 19% on the comparison period, totaling EUR 112.9 million.

Suominen’s operating profit, excluding non-recurring items, rose to an all-time high of EUR 9.9 million, corresponding to 8.8% of net sales. The very positive development of operating profit was attributable to increased net sales and strengthened gross profit, which continued to grow thanks to the improvement measures taken in Suominen’s operations. Additionally, strengthening of the US dollar increased the operating profit. Profit for Q2 surged to a new level at EUR 6.2 million. Of the financial targets monitored on a quarterly basis, return on invested capital rose to 17.1% (continuous operations) and our gearing declined to 28.2%.

We confirmed in May that we will carry out our planned investment in a new wetlaid production line at our plant in Bethune in the United States. The investment is expected to create at least 25 new jobs at the plant. The investment is the single most important project in Suominen’s EUR 30-50 million growth investment program. Our goal is to increase both our sales volumes and the proportion of value-added products in our portfolio, which is why the new production line will focus on higher-value nonwovens, which are used for, among other things, household and industrial wiping products and flushable wiping products. We expect the installation of the production line to be finished during the second half of 2016.

Also the other previously announced initiatives in our growth investment program are progressing as planned. Investments in equipment, aimed at broadening the product offering, are being carried out at the Paulínia plant in Brazil and the Alicante plant in Spain. Once the investments have been completed, the plants will be able to supply nonwovens not only to higher added-value wiping products, but also to medical nonwovens. A previously closed production line was taken into use at the Nakkila plant during Q2. The plant will now be able to flexibly meet the strengthened demand on the European markets.”

Click to open the full interim report release (PDF)