Dynamic start to year for Wacker Neuson

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Construction OEM Wacker Neuson has made a successful start to 2022. Group revenue for the first quarter amounted to EUR 521.6 million, which is a rise of 20% relative to the previous year.

Adjusted for currency effects, this corresponds to an increase of 18.4%. Profitability was impacted, however, by inefficiencies caused by continued supply chain strains and sharp rises in input costs: Earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) fell 10.3% to EUR 39.1 million. The EBIT margin amounted to 7.5%, which represents a decline of 250 basis points (Q1/21: 10.0 percent).

“Despite continued supply chain challenges, our teams succeeded once again in meeting dynamic demand for our products and delivered another quarter of strong growth,” said Dr. Karl Tragl, chairman of the executive board and CEO of the Wacker Neuson Group. “At the same time, the coronavirus pandemic and continued supply chain disruptions are still impacting operating workflows and resulting in rework. Along with the high cost of materials and rising energy prices, these factors are putting our gross margin under pressure.”

Double-digit growth across all reporting regions

Revenue for Europe (EMEA) for the first quarter rose 17.9 percent relative to the previous year to reach EUR 411.6 million (Q1/21: EUR 349.2 million). Double-digit growth rates made Germany, Austria, the UK, France, Poland and the Czech Republic the key growth drivers. The Group benefited from strong demand for excavators, wheel loaders and dumpers for the construction industry. Wacker Neuson’s own rental business also developed on a positive trajectory. Q1 2022 also saw a significant upturn in business with agricultural customers of Group brands Kramer and Weidemann compared with the previous year, with an increase of 32.2 percent recorded (Q1/22: EUR 105.5 million; Q1/21: EUR 79.8 million).

In the Americas, positive trends in the US and Canada maintained momentum. Revenue in the first quarter grew at an above-average rate of 32.9 percent to reach EUR 90.8 million, driven in part by strong demand from key accounts (Q1/21: EUR 68.3 million). Adjusted for currency effects, the rate of increase amounted to 23.7 percent. There was particularly strong growth in excavators and compact track loaders as well as in worksite technology products including generators and light towers.

In Asia-Pacific, revenue increased relative to the previous year by 16.4 percent to EUR 19.2 million (Q1/21: EUR 16.5 million). The upturn amounted to 12.7 percent when adjusted for currency effects. There was sustained strong growth in Australia, particularly in excavators and rollers, but the Group continued to face a challenging market environment in China.

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Saul Wordsworth is deputy editor of the iVT brand - which includes digital and print editions of a quarterly magazine and Off-Highway Annual, as well as ivtinternational.com. He is a keen cyclist and lives in north London.

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