In the first half of 2015, Vetropack Group maintained the record level of sales achieved in the previous year with a sales volume of 2.36 billion units of glass packaging. It also increased revenue in local currency by 5.8%. Negative exchange rate effects pushed consolidated gross revenue down by 12.4% to CHF 272.8 million.
Two factors proved particularly influential for Vetropack Group in the first six months of the fiscal year:
•The depegging of the Swiss franc from the euro has not only had a negative impact on consolidation in Swiss francs, but it has also made competition even more intense for the Swiss plant in St-Prex. In order to withstand import pressure, Vetropack Ltd was forced to reduce market prices for its glass packaging considerably. Although running costs were converted to euros where possible, the negative effects on performance could not be fully offset.
•The economic situation in Ukraine has been faced with high inflation and a sharp fall in production output and consumption. The value of the local currency, the hryvnia, plummeted by around 50% in the period under review alone.
The volume of sales for the first half of 2015 matched the record level achieved a year earlier. This remained unchanged at 2.36 billion units of glass packaging (2014: 2.36 billion). Consolidated gross revenue came to CHF 272.8 million (2014: CHF 311.4 million). This reduction was due to exchange rate effects, triggered particularly by the strong Swiss franc and the fall of the Ukrainian hryvnia. Adjusted for currency effects, consolidated gross revenue increased by a creditable 5.8%.
Adjusted for currency effects, EBIT stood at CHF 30.8 million, which was slightly below the figures of the previous year. Reported EBIT reached CHF 24.1 million (2014: CHF 32.2 million). The EBIT margin stood at 8.9% (2014: 10.3%).
Consolidated net profit, which amounted to CHF 14.2 million (2014: CHF 28.2 million), was very heavily affected by unrealised exchange rate losses on euro-denominated credit balances at Vetropack Holding Ltd, to the tune of more than CHF 5 million.
At CHF 48.4 million (2014: CHF 58.6 million), cash flow fell by 17.4% on the same period in the previous year. The cash flow margin therefore remained high, at 17.7% of gross revenue (2014: 18.8%).
The acquisition of the Italian glassworks in Trezzano sul Naviglio, which was announced at the beginning of June 2015, was completed at the end of July and is therefore not included in the semi-annual figures.