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DGAP-News: VTG with a solid start into the year and promising developments in all three divisions

VTG Aktiengesellschaft / Key word(s): Interim Report

16.05.2013 / 07:30

Press Release

VTG with a solid start into the year and promising developments in all three divisions

- Significant rise in revenue and EBITDA

- Member of the Executive Board for Logistics and Safety leaves company

- Capacity utilization down slightly, as expected

- Innovation: New bogie type increases payload of new build wagons

- New projects initiated in logistics divisions

- Forecast for 2013 re-affirmed

Hamburg, May 16, 2013. VTG Aktiengesellschaft (WKN: VTG999), one of the leading wagon hire and rail logistics companies in Europe, expanded its business in all three operational divisions in the first quarter of 2013. Revenue for the Group increased by 5.3 percent compared to the first quarter of 2012, from EUR 191.8 million to EUR 202.1 million. There was also an upward trend in EBITDA, which reached EUR 45.0 million, an increase of 9.5 percent on the same period of the previous year (EUR 41.1 million). Operating cash flow increased by EUR 9.2 million to EUR 44.2 million.

'We had a very pleasing start to the new year, with our market position remaining solid', says Dr. Heiko Fischer, CEO of VTG Aktiengesellschaft. He adds: 'After a year of consolidation, we are now again looking out for new opportunities for growth and are confident about the negotiations with Kuehne + Nagel aimed at expanding our rail logistics portfolio'. VTG is currently investigating the possibility of a merger of the Rail Logistics Division with some of the rail forwarding operations of the Kuehne + Nagel group of companies, with VTG as majority shareholder. A letter of intent regarding this was signed in April, with a final decision expected in the second half of 2013.

Femke Scholten, Member of the Executive Board for Logistics and Safety, leaves the company
Femke Scholten, VTG Chief Logistics & Safety Officer is returning to the international corporate sector and left VTG by May 15th 2013. Scholten initiated successfully a major change program in VTG Rail Logistics to enable future growth. Under her leadership, she furthermore developed and started with the execution of mid-term strategies for both logistics divisions to achieve profitable growth. The Supervisory Board thanks Scholten for her achievements and dedication to the company and wishes her all the best for her future endeavors. CEO Dr. Heiko Fischer and CFO Dr. Kai Kleeberg will be stepping in provisionally and will initially be responsible for what were previously Scholten's executive duties. The Rail Logistics Division and the area of Safety will be headed by Fischer until a successor is found. Kleeberg will be taking charge of the Tank Container Logistics Division, which he had already headed for many years before Scholten's appointment.

Railcar Division performs well due to large number of completed orders for new wagons
In the Railcar Division, revenue rose by 6.4 percent, from EUR 77.9 million in the first quarter of 2012 to EUR 83.0 million. The trend in EBITDA was also positive, increasing by 12.6 percent from EUR 38.7 million to EUR 43.5 million. The EBITDA margin related to revenue increased compared with the same period of 2012, from 49.6 percent to 52.5 percent. These good results were due mainly to the completion of orders for newly built wagons in 2012 and price adjustments in the Railcar Division.

The level of capacity utilization in the fleet of more than 54,400 wagons declined slightly in the first quarter. Having stood at 90.6 percent on March 31, 2012 and at 90.4 percent at the end of 2012, the level fell to 89.9 percent. Capacity utilization thus still remains at a high level but is being affected by the decline in demand typically seen at the end of winter as well as by the general economic situation. Furthermore VTG actively took the decision to take some wagons back from customers who did not want to accept the full extent of necessary price adjustments arising from new and costly maintenance requirements.

As part of VTG's drive for innovation, all chemical tank wagons built at Waggonbau Graaff in Elze are currently being fitted with a new type of bogie. This new feature increases the load capacity of the wagon, meaning that the existing tank capacity can be better utilized, or, if required, the size of tank itself can be enlarged. This measure increases cost efficiency and makes rail transports even more environmentally friendly.

Rail Logistics negotiates with Kuehne + Nagel
In the first quarter of 2013, Rail Logistics generated revenue of EUR 79.6 million, a 5.8 percent increase on the first quarter of 2012 (EUR 75.3 million). EBITDA shrank by 29.2 percent to EUR 1.7 million (Q1 2012: EUR 2.4 million). However, comparison with the figure for the fourth quarter of 2012, of EUR 1.1 million, reveals that the division indeed managed to push EBITDA up again slightly. Compared with the first quarter of 2012, the EBITDA margin on gross profit shrank from 36.2 percent to 28.0 percent, but again this was also higher than the figure for the fourth quarter of 2012 (19.3 percent).

The new year got off to a positive start in the petrochemical goods and industrial goods product segments. In industrial goods, the new transports of aluminum and copper initiated in 2012 are continuing in 2013. The collaborative venture under negotiation with Kuehne + Nagel would greatly strengthen this product segment. The division's performance is however being affected by the fact that the market for agricultural transports remains very difficult in some regions.

Tank Container Logistics holds its own and develops new services
In the first three months of the financial year, revenue in Tank Container Logistics amounted to EUR 39.5 million. This represented a 2.3 percent increase on the first quarter of 2012 (EUR 38.6 million). EBITDA shrank by 6.4 percent compared with the first quarter of 2012, standing at EUR 2.9 million (Q1 2012: EUR 3.1 million). The EBITDA margin on gross profit shrank to 44.4 percent (Q1 2012: 48.5 percent).

In the first quarter of 2013, the division continued to operate in a highly competitive environment. Thus Tank Container Logistics took on only carefully selected orders and curbed expansion of transport volume. These measures were taken to systematically eliminate no-load transports in its international flows of transport and so increase profitability. The division thus continued with its strategy of achieving further growth by concentrating on a select group of customers in specific product areas. This strategy is underpinned by carefully targeted investment in appropriate technical features and equipment, enabling the division to meet in particular the requirements of those customers who demand a higher level of service than that provided with purely standard transports. In this regard, the division has decided to add to the range of services it offers to customers the future option of overland transports within China using its own equipment.

VTG expects continued upward trend in business
Based on economic estimates and the expected impact on the VTG divisions, the Executive Board anticipates a continued positive trend in business. This applies especially to the Railcar Division, which will benefit in particular in 2013 from the orders for new wagons completed in the previous year. Both logistics divisions face the challenge of holding their own in a demanding market. The Executive Board of VTG re-affirms its forecast, anticipating that the VTG Group will achieve revenue in the range EUR 780 - 830 million and EBITDA in the range EUR 180 - 190 million.

At the Annual General Meeting next week, VTG will be proposing the payment of a dividend of EUR 0.37 per share for the financial year 2012. This represents an increase of some 6,0 percent on the previous year.
Key Figures for the VTG Group

Financial year 1.1. - 31.3. 2013 1.1. - 31.3. 2012 Change
in %
Revenue in EUR million 202.1 191.8 5.3
EBITDA in EUR million 45.0 41.1 9.5
EBIT in EUR million 18.6 15.9 16.9
EBT in EUR million 6.6 3.0 119.5
Group profit in EUR million 4.1 1.9 117.8
Depreciation and amortization in EUR million 26.4 25.2 4.7
Capital expenditure in EUR million 47.3 42.4 11.7
Operating cash flow in EUR million 44.2 35.0 26.2
Earnings per share in EUR 0.18 0.07 157.1
Railcar Division      
Revenue in EUR million 83.0 77.9 6.4
EBITDA in EUR million 43.5 38.7 12.6
EBITDA margin in % 52.5 49.6  
Rail Logistics Division      
Revenue in EUR million 79.6 75.3 5.8
EBITDA in EUR million 1.7 2.4 -29.2
EBITDA margin in % 28.0 36.2  
Tank Container Logistics Division      
Revenue in EUR million 39.5 38.6 2.3
EBITDA in EUR million 2.9 3.1 -6.4
EBITDA margin in % 44.4 48.5  
  31.03.2013 31.03.2012 Change
in %
Number of employees 1,182 1,205 -1.9
- in Germany 830 816 1.7
- abroad 352 389 -9.5
  31.03.2013 31.12.2012 Change
in %
Balance sheet total in EUR million 1,562.4 1,527.9 2.3
Non-current assets in EUR million 1,321.4 1,309.4 0.9
Current assets in EUR million 241.0 218.5 10.3
Shareholders equity in EUR million 317.2 311.7 1.8
Liabilities in EUR million 1,245.2 1,216.2 2.4
Equity ration in % 20.3 20.4  

About VTG:

VTG Aktiengesellschaft is one of Europe's leading wagon hire and rail logistics companies. The company has the largest private railcar fleet in Europe. Globally, the fleet consists of some 54,400 railcars, with a focus on tank cars and state-of-the-art high capacity freight cars and flat cars. In addition to the hiring of wagons, the Group offers comprehensive multi-modal logistics services, mainly around rail transport, and global tank container transports.

With the combination of its three interlinked divisions Railcar, Rail Logistics and Tank Container Logistics, VTG offers its customers a high-performance platform for international transport of their freight. The Group has many years of experience and specific expertise, in particular in the transport of liquid and sensitive goods. Its customers include numerous well-known companies from almost every industrial sector, for example the chemical, petroleum, automotive, paper and agricultural industries.

In the financial year 2012, VTG generated revenue of EUR 767.0 million and operating profit (EBITDA) of EUR 173.8 million. Via its subsidiaries and affiliates the company, which has its head office in Hamburg, is mainly present in Europe, Asia, Russia and North America. As at 31 December 2012, VTG had 1,188 employees worldwide in consolidated companies. Since June 2007, VTG AG has been listed on the official Prime Standard market of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange and also on the SDAX (WKN: VTG999).

Media contact:

Monika Gabler
Head of Corporate Communications
Telephone: +49 (0) 40 23 54-1341
Fax: +49 (0) 40 23 54-1340

Investor Relations contact:

Andreas Hunscheidt
Senior Investor Relations Manager
Telephone: +49 (0) 40 23 54-1352
Fax: +49 (0) 40 23 54-1350

Further information at

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