The forecasts made in summer have been realized: in the 3rd quarter of 2020 we saw positive economic development. It was important that especially markets in Europe, Russia, China and Latin America stabilized. This development had a significant impact on sales and earnings.
At EUR 1.1 billion, sales in the first three quarters of 2020 were significantly below the EUR 1.3 billion achieved in the same period last year. However, we are down “only” minus 15.2 percent. At the end of the second quarter, it was down 18.3 percent. At EUR 70.6 million, the EBIT is well above expectations, net financial debt is at its lowest level since Q1/2016, and the consolidated net result for the Group is EUR 31.8 million.
PALFINGER has handled the first phase of the crisis confidently and has demonstrated a high level of stability. Measures were implemented quickly and consistently in the first two quarters and teamed with the ongoing transformation process, are having a positive effect. Together this has helped PALFINGER position itself optimally and enabled successful operation in this rapidly-changing market environment.
Especially during the crisis, we have seen how important collaboration and coordination has been between customers and partners of PALFINGER. This is our strength: we understand their needs and challenges in order to develop the best solutions together with them and for them. We think beyond pure product. This is how we create additional benefits for our customers and partners. In the coming months with our “Challenge Accepted” campaign we will demonstrate this. It was also the tagline for the first PALFINGER World Tour in October, a digital event that intensified contact with customers and partners worldwide, and created an important platform for future exchange and cooperation.
Despite all the uncertainties faced regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, we are confident about the upcoming quarter of the year. The successful measures taken over the last few months and their stable results and our good order levels situation give us the assurance to be able to plan into the first quarter of 2021. For 2020, we are targeting sales in excess of EUR 1.5 billion and expect an EBIT margin of over 6 percent. This gives us a good basis for meeting the challenges that await us in 2021. Challenge accepted.
Click here to view the presentation on the first three quarters results 2020.