SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG publishes nine months' report for 2009

SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG / Quarter Results


Dissemination of a Corporate News, transmitted by
DGAP - a company of EquityStory AG.
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- Q3/09 sales at EUR2,810k - plus 24.9% from Q3/08 (EUR2,249k) - strong     sales growth in industry and mobility markets

- 9M/09 sales within expectations at EUR8,476k, down 18.9% from 9M/08     (EUR10,453k)

- Gross margin strongly improved: Q3/09: 32.9% vs. 3.2% in Q3/08; 9M/09:     26.8% vs. 16.9% in 9M/08

- U.S. Army awarded expected follow-on order to SFC and DuPont in early     Q3/09

Brunnthal, October 29, 2009 - SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG, technology and market leader for mobile and off-grid power solutions based on fuel cells, generated sales of EUR2,810k in Q3/09, versus EUR2,249k in Q3/08, which corresponds to an increase of 24.9%. In the first nine months of 2009 sales amounted to EUR8,476k, compared with EUR10,453k in the first nine months of 2008 (minus 18.9%). The main revenue decrease occurred in the defense market, combined with continued consumer reticence in the leisure market. But SFC, with sales down 16.1% in that market, again performed better than the industry, which suffered a 24.1% (H1/09) drop in registrations for recreational vehicles in Europe and 53% (H1/09) production decline in Germany. Despite a slow down in investment decision SFC posted a remarkable 59.5% sales growth in the industry market. In the mobility market all orders from Daimler and VW for on-board power supply for special purpose vehicles were shipped. Thus, with EUR723k, the mobility segment supported the sales growth in Q3.

In Q3/09, the number of A-Series fuel cells sold increased to 941 units (Q3/08: 919 units). In the first nine months of 2009, 3,137 fuel cell systems were shipped (9M/08: 3,391 units, minus 7.5%). A decrease in units shipped to the leisure market was partly compensated by growth in the industry and mobility markets. Driven by favourable pricing and product mix changes, A-Series revenue was increased by 7.9% to EUR6,769k (9M/08: EUR6,273).

In Q3/09, gross margin improved to 32.9% (Q3/08: 3.2%), whereas a one-off effect in the defense segment has to be considered. Also the 9M/09 gross margin was remarkably improved to 26.8% (9M/08: 16.9%) - despite the lower sales volume. This proves the success of the continued product cost reductions. In Q3/09 EBIT also improved to minus EUR893k (Q3/08: minus EUR2,412k). EBIT margin came out at minus 31.8% (Q3/08: minus 107.2%). For the first nine months of 2009, an EBIT improvement to minus EUR3,271k was achieved (9M/08: minus EUR3,772k), which corresponds to an EBIT margin of minus 38.6% (9M/08: minus 36.1%). 9M/09 net loss amounted to minus EUR2,668k (9M/08: minus EUR2,126k). In Q3/09, net loss improved by 59.4% to minus EUR753k (Q3/08: minus EUR1,854k).

Cash and cash equivalents amounted to EUR42,056k as of September 30, 2009 (June 30, 2009: EUR43,059k).

These results also demonstrate the first successes of the cost-saving program which is running since this year's second quarter. In response to the current macroeconomic risks and lack of market transparency, and reflecting the appropriate degree of caution, the Management Board will continue to work on the cost-saving program also in the fourth quarter. This initiative will result in reasonable savings across the entire organization.

In early July 2009, the U.S. Army awarded an order to DuPont and SFC for the further development of portable fuel cells. SFC's share of the project amounts to roughly two million U.S. dollars. With this project, SFC and DuPont continue their long-standing, successful cooperation to develop portable power supply solutions for the Armed Forces.
For the 2009 business year the Management Board continues to aim for growth in the industry market. An important strategic goal is to broaden SFC's sales base in order to make the company less dependent on the distinctive seasonal and economic fluctuations of the leisure market. A double-digit growth rate in the industry market as well as the successful market entry into the new segment of special purpose vehicles confirm initial success in implementation of this strategy. However, this growth cannot compensate for the delays in the award of defense contracts and the fluctuations in the leisure market yet. Despite this short fall in sales revenues, continued improvement of our product margins and the ongoing cost-saving program should enable an operating result (EBIT) approx. at its 2008 level.
The nine months' report of SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG is available for download at www.sfc.com.

About SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG

SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG (www.sfc.com) is market leader in fuel cell technologies for mobile and off-grid power applications serving the leisure, industrial and defense markets. As one of Germany's technology pioneers, SFC has won numerous innovation awards. SFC has alliances with leading companies in a wide range of industries. Unlike most other fuel cell manufacturers, who are in the research and development phase or run subsidized demonstration projects, SFC has shipped more than 15,000 fully commercial products to industrial and private end users for more than five years, and has created a convenient fuel cartridge supply infrastructure. SFC is DIN ISO 9001:2000 certified. SFC is based in Brunnthal, Germany, and has a U.S. sales and technical service office in Atlanta.

SFC Investor Relations:

Barbara von Frankenberg 
Head of Investor Relations and Public Relations
SFC Smart Fuel Cell AG
Eugen-Sänger-Ring 4
D-85649 Brunnthal 
Tel. +49 89 673 592-378
Fax +49 89 673 592-169
E-mail: [email protected]
Web: www.sfc.com

29.10.2009  Financial News transmitted by DGAP

Language:     English
Company:      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  
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