Economy in Aichhalden: Simon reduces natural gas consumption – half-year figures are stable – Schramberg and surroundings

The Simon Group in Aichhalden is currently exploring potential energy savings. Photo: Fritsche

Indus Holding AG, which also includes the Simon Group, generated a profit of EUR 51.1 million before interest and taxes in the first half of the year, despite the difficult economic situation.

Bergisch Gladbach / Aichhalden – The listed investment company released key figures for the first half of 2022 on Wednesday: Indus Holding AG increased sales by 11.1 percent to 944.9 million euros (comparable period 2021: 850.3 million euros). 8.2 percent sales growth was achieved thanks to organic growth without acquisitions. EBIT (profit before interest and taxes) was EUR 51.1 million (compared to 2021: EUR 56.3 million). It would have been even higher if it had not been burdened with soaring material and energy costs as well as higher transport and logistics costs, which is particularly influenced by the Automotive Technology segment. The EBIT margin was 5.4 percent. (compared to 2021: 6.6%).

“Despite the deteriorating world and economic situation, the Indus Group is doing very well. Four of the five segments clearly achieve our target margin of ten percent plus ”, Indus CEO Johannes Schmidt assessed the result. The segments construction / infrastructure, mechanical and plant engineering, medical and health technology and metal technology increased, while only the automotive technology segment decreased.

Considerably high costs of materials and energy

The Simon Group operates in the metal technology segment. During this period, both sales (plus 7.5% to EUR 235.2 million) and EBIT (plus 37.2% to EUR 26.9 million) increased. However, metal technology companies are also suffering from rising material and energy prices, which can be passed on to customers in very different ways and depending on the terms of the contract. “Due to high energy costs and an uncertain supply situation, our farms are currently identifying energy saving potential and substitution options in production processes,” said Schmidt. “Small and medium-sized companies are creative here. At the Simon Group, for example, the consumption of natural gas by individual consumers can be reduced by up to 40 percent – simply by switching to other consumables such as electricity and oil or technological conversion processes,” he says. Schmidt

“Set the right course”

“We have already set the right course for further energy savings in the last few months,” added Simon Managing Director Tobias Hilgert. “The Indus Sustainable Development Bank has actively supported us in this. Thanks to our supplementary PV system, we will have more than one MV peak power from renewable energy sources available from autumn. We also started an electricity purification project. Special technology allows us to counteract network repercussions and disruptions to the electricity grid, thereby reducing our electricity consumption, ”he explains.

Expected higher sales

“Our holding companies face complex challenges every day in a difficult overall economic climate,” assured Schmidt. “In particular, extreme increases in material and energy prices are sometimes noticeable. Transferring these increased costs to customers works to different degrees depending on the industry, ”he continued. In connection with price transfers related to inflation in many holding companies, the management board of Indus therefore assumes higher group sales from 1.9 to 2.0 billion euros in the financial year 2022.

The consequences of the gas supply interruption were not taken into account

However, EBIT will be burdened by the increase in material prices in the automotive engineering segment and the foreseeable increase in personnel and energy costs in the second half of the year in the entire portfolio. Indus therefore forecasts an EBIT of between € 100 and € 115 million for the full year. In the earlier forecast of March 2022, sales were expected to range from 1.8 to 1.95 billion euros and EBIT from 115 to 130 million euros. Indus’s board of directors noted that the consequences of a possible interruption of gas supplies had not been taken into account as it is currently not possible to realistically estimate the macroeconomic effects of Indus related companies at the time.

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