INDUS remains reliable dividend stock
• Annual Shareholders’ Meeting approves dividend of EUR 1.50 per share
• Shareholders approve creation of new Authorized Capital
At today’s Annual Shareholders’ Meeting of INDUS Holding AG, the shareholders followed the proposal of the Board of Management and the Supervisory Board and resolved to pay an unchanged dividend of EUR 1.50 per share. In the fiscal year 2018, the INDUS Group generated sales revenues of EUR 1.71 billion and earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) after impairment of EUR 134.7 million. The distributable profit of INDUS Holding AG for the fiscal year amounted to EUR 76.3 million, with the approved dividend payout totaling EUR 36.7 million. This corresponds to a payout ratio of 48.0 % and a dividend yield of 3.8 %.Dr. Johannes Schmidt, Chairman of the Board of Management of the INDUS Group, emphasized in his speech that most of the INDUS companies continue to fare extraordinarily well in spite of weaker economic momentum and intense competition: “The order books are full and the majority of the INDUS companies will continue to grow in 2019. Perhaps not as rapidly as before, but still very respectably.” According to him, the Automotive Technology segment is an exception because the problems of the automotive industry directly affect the Group’s series production suppliers.
PARKOUR strategy program promotes innovation and operational excellence
The PARKOUR strategy program continues the successful KOMPASS 2020 program for the following years. In addition to actively strengthening the portfolio, the focus will primarily be on promoting innovation and improving the performance of the companies to further increase the competitiveness and profitability of the INDUS companies. INDUS therefore plans to invest about EUR 89 million in its portfolio companies in the current fiscal year. The focus will be on promoting operational excellence. INDUS will also double the funds for the development bank scheme to up to 3 % of its annual consolidated EBIT to strengthen the capacity for innovation. EUR 50 million are made available for the expansion of the portfolio in the defined growth industries, i.e. automation and measuring technology and control engineering, construction technology, safety technology, medical engineering / life science, technology for infrastructure / logistics as well as energy and environmental technology.
Acquisition in the automation and measuring technology and control engineering sector as growth industry
In the fiscal year 2018, INDUS was able to realize two second-tier acquisitions. In addition, a portfolio company took over the operations of a trading firm for medical aids. However, with respect to acquisitions, the overall market environment was difficult. “We could have invested more in the acquisition of direct investments in 2018, but we refrained from doing so due to unreasonably high prices,” explained Schmidt. “Meanwhile the situation has significantly improved, enabling us to report the successful first-tier acquisition of MESUTRONIC Gerätebau GmbH for the current year.” In May 2019, INDUS acquired 89.9 % of MESUTRONIC, a specialist in the manufacture of metal and contaminant detection systems. In 2018, the company generated annual sales revenues of more than EUR 24 million. It operates in the automation and measuring technology and control engineering sector sector, which has been identified as an industry of the future.
Cautiously optimistic outlook for 2019
After a strong first quarter, but still growing pressure on series production suppliers in the vehicle technology sector, CEO Johannes Schmidt is cautiously optimistic about the current financial year: “With PARKOUR we have set the right course. In view of the good growth prospects in four out of five segments, the vast majority of the INDUS portfolio companies are in good to very good shape.” For the year as a whole, the INDUS Group anticipates sales of between EUR 1.72 and 1.77 billion. However, the Automotive Technology segment is hardly calculable at present. “Even though manufacturers predict stable to slightly rising sales volumes in their reports on the first quarter, the significantly lower call-off figures of recent months teach us to remain cautious. Therefore, reaching the lower end of the targeted EBIT range of between EUR 156 and 162 million targeted seems very ambitious to us at present,” said Johannes Schmidt.
All agenda items adopted by a large majority
In voting on the agenda, a large majority of the Shareholders’ Meeting approved the proposals made by the Board of Management and the Supervisory Board. The actions of the Board of Management and the Supervisory Board were approved and the dividend proposal accepted. About 56 % of the share capital was represented at the 2019 Ordinary Shareholders’ Meeting of INDUS. In order to continue to provide the company with maximum flexibility in the future, creation of a new Authorized Capital and a corresponding amendment to the statutes were resolved.
For further information on the Shareholders’ Meeting, the speech by CEO Dr. Johannes Schmidt and the voting results, please click here.