SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG: Nine-months report 2008: Sales growth slows on troubled economy

SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG / Quarter Results/Forecast
Release of an Ad hoc announcement according to § 15 WpHG, transmitted by DGAP - a company of EquityStory AG.
The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.

- Sales increase of 8.5% to €10,453k in the period under review, up from     €9,632k in the first nine months of 2007

- Growth in all markets below expectations because of current economic     situation

- Defense segment: Top honours for SFC technology in U.S. Department of Defense competition affirm the clear competitive advantage of SFC’s     products

- Industrial segment: EFOY Pro Series successfully launched for     professional users

Munich/Brunnthal, October 21, 2008 – Despite the ongoing economic woes, SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG increased its sales by 8.5% in the first nine months of 2008. Sales in the period from January to September 2008 reached €10,453k (9M 2007: €9,632k), with €2,249k of that amount attributable to the third quarter (Q3 2007: €2,126k). Spending cutbacks noticeable throughout Europe in the second quarter, especially among leisure customers, continued in the third quarter and spread to SFC’s other markets in the wake of the financial market crisis. In light of the current market climate, the company is going to need more time to position its fuel cell technology in the industrial segment and penetrate these markets with the new series of EFOY fuel cells for professional users launched in September. In addition, as forecast in the last report, a slow-down in budget allocation for some defense programmes has materialized. This means that projects originally scheduled for 2008 will not be executed this year.
A total of 3,391 EFOY units were sold in the first nine months of 2008, up from 3,030 units a year earlier, which corresponds to an increase of 11.9%. In the leisure segment, 37 international motor home manufacturers will make EFOY fuel cells available in their 2009 models directly ex works, making EFOY the standard in on-board power supply for recreational vehicles. With the introduction of the EFOY Pro Series in September 2008, SFC now offers professional users in the industrial segment the perfect energy solution for their off-grid applications, including surveillance and traffic guidance systems. At the beginning of October, portable fuel cell systems based on SFC technology won first and third place honours in the Wearable Power Prize competition of the U.S. Department of Defense. These top showings in a contest that garnered tremendous international attention are proof positive of the leading position SFC commands in this demanding market.

Given the challenging market situation, EBIT slipped 3.8% to minus €3,772k in the first nine months of 2008, following minus €3,635k in the same period the year before. Third-quarter EBIT amounted to minus €2,412k, compared with minus €1,196k in the third quarter of 2007. The net loss widened in the first nine months of 2008, expanding 4.6% to €2,126k, versus €2,032k a year earlier. The net loss for the quarter stood at €1,854k (Q3 2007: €736k).

Cash and cash equivalents totalled €45,526k as of September 30, 2008 (December 31, 2007: €52,945k).

SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG had 105 employees as of September 30, 2008 (September 30, 2007: 86).

The current economic and financial market crisis across the globe will not spare SFC’s growth prospects for the short and medium term. With uncertainty plaguing the markets and all but eliminating the ability of companies to see what lies ahead, management believes that sales for this year will in a worst-case scenario slightly miss fiscal year 2007 sales; in a best-case scenario, sales growth up to 10% may be achievable.
The nine-months report is available for download at www.sfc.com.

SFC Investor Relations:

Barbara v. Frankenberg 

Investor Relations Manager

SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG

Eugen-Sänger-Ring 4

D-85649 Brunnthal 

Tel. +49 89 673 592 378

Fax +49 89 673 592 369

E-mail: [email protected]

Web: www.sfc.com

21.10.2008  Financial News transmitted by DGAP

Language:     English
Issuer:       SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG
              Eugen-Saenger-Ring 4
              85649 Brunnthal
Phone:        +49 (89) 673 592 - 100
Fax:          +49 (89) 673 592 - 169
E-mail:       [email protected]
Internet:     www.sfc.com
ISIN:         DE0007568578
WKN:          756857
Listed: Regulierter Markt in Frankfurt (Prime Standard); Freiverkehr in Berlin, München, Düsseldorf, Stuttgart  
End of News DGAP News-Service