Order intake and net sales
The Mikron Group reported order intake of CHF 305.7 million in 2021, representing an increase of 14.4% compared with the prior year (CHF 267.3 million).
Posting annual net sales of CHF 289.5 million, the Mikron Group exceeded the prior-year’s result of CHF 257.8 million by 12.3%. Europe remains Mikron’s most important market, with approximately 50% of total net sales in 2021 (2020: 46%). Making up a share of 33%, North America remains in second place (previous year: 37%). The strongest market segment is by far the pharmaceutical and medtech sector at 56% (previous year: 56%). The automotive industry contributed 11% (prior year: 14%) to total net sales.
Order backlog and capacity utilization
At CHF 176.7 million, the Mikron Group’s order backlog at the end of 2021 was 9.3% higher than the prior-year figure. Capacity utilization in the Mikron Automation segment and in the Mikron Tool division was high during the whole year. In the Mikron Machining division, on the other hand, low demand in the first half of the year led to some spare capacity, which was managed with adjusted working hours. In the final months of the year under review, Mikron Machining’s capacities were subsequently also well-utilized.
In the 2021 financial year, the Mikron Group succeeded in significantly improving its EBIT and profit. Compared with the previous year, Mikron increased its EBIT from CHF -4.7 million (before restructuring costs) to CHF 17.6 million and turned its yearly loss of CHF -22.1 million into a profit of CHF 17.0 million. The Group thus achieved an EBIT margin for 2021 of 6.1%. The successfully completed restructuring measures made a significant contribution to this improvement. Profit per share for the year 2021 came to CHF 1.04 (prior year: loss of CHF -1.35).
Financial result, income taxes and profit
The financial result improved compared to the previous year and amounted to CHF -0.9 million (2020: CHF -2.3 million), CHF 0.6 million of which was related to net exchange rate gains (prior year: CHF -1.1 million). Interest on and valuation of bonds to optimize financial results were netted against other financial expenses such as fees for bank guarantees. Profit before taxes amounted to CHF 16.7 million (prior year: CHF -23.1 million), on which income taxes of CHF -0.3 million (prior year: CHF -1.0 million) were booked. The tax expense was distorted by the capitalization of previously not recognized tax-loss carry-forwards.
The investment property in Nidau (Switzerland) generated net income of CHF -0.4 million (prior year: CHF -0.7 million) including an impairment of CHF 0.4 million based on an update to the third-party market value assessment performed at the end of 2021. The non-operating result excludes the financing costs of the mortgage (repaid in 2021, prior year: CHF 9.0 million). Most of the vacancy of about 60% could be rented out starting December 2021.
Balance sheet, financing and equity ratio
Overall, the Mikron Group’s balance sheet remains very strong. Mikron is free of net debt and reports a healthy equity ratio.
Cash and cash equivalents plus current financial assets of CHF 54.5 million significantly exceed interest-bearing liabilities of CHF 7.7 million. The net cash position remained at a high CHF 46.6 million or 16% of net sales (prior year: 6%).
Net working capital reduced to CHF -2.0 million from CHF 22.8 in the prior year.
Totaling CHF 135.4 million, non-current assets increased by CHF 23.0 million. In line with strategy, investments of CHF 21.0 million (prior year: CHF 12.0 million) were made in production equipment and a building extension for the automation and machining business and a number of IT projects to improve efficiency and security. The total amount of expenditure for new product development and enhancements (capitalized and non-capitalized) was about 2.5% of net sales. Amortization and depreciation totaled CHF 9.1 million (prior year: CHF 10.4 million). The long-term financial liabilities of CHF 5.6 million mainly relate to finance leases for production equipment and the mortgage for one production facility.
Since June 2020, Mikron has been able to draw on a CHF 50.0 million credit agreement with a bank consortium which is available for bank guarantees to secure advance payments from customers and for fixed advances that are currently not being used. An additional CHF 20.0 million of the mortgage can be drawn under this credit agreement for two production sites in Switzerland. The credit agreement will expire at the end of June 2024 and requires Mikron to achieve certain key financial figures (covenants). The Group met these by a comfortable margin. The renewal of the credit agreement has been secured with the existing partner banks. The “COVID-19” and a “COVID-19 plus” loan facility in Switzerland were cancelled and repaid in 2021.
In 2021, shareholders’ equity rose to CHF 165.1 million. This represents a strong equity ratio of 55% (prior year: 53%). Despite the increase of the balance sheet total the equity ratio increased by 2% due to the net profit of the year.
Mikron Group’s improved earnings situation also contributed to a marked increase in cash flows. Cash flow from operating activities stood at CHF 50.7 million (2020: CHF 9.2 million.) It includes down payments and progress payments from customer projects in the amount of CHF 218.3 million. A total of CHF 20.4 million (prior year: CHF 15.3 million) was used for investment in non-current assets. A net profit led to an operational free cash flow (excl. changes in financial assets) of CHF 31.1 million (prior year: CHF -5.8 million).
Cash flow from financing activities amounted to CHF -17.4 million in the year under review (prior year: CHF 2.5 million), mainly stemming from the repayment of mortgages and of financial leases.
Distribution to shareholders
At the General Meeting on 27 April 2022, the Board of Directors of the Mikron Group will propose a distribution to the shareholders of CHF 0.24 per share.
At the end of 2021, the share price stood at CHF 7.70 (prior year: CHF 5.40 per share). The precise share performance is available at all times on the Mikron Group website. Based on the year-end share price, the Mikron Group is valued at CHF 128.7 million.
Corporate Financial Statements of Mikron Holding AG
Mikron Holding AG is the legal owner (directly or indirectly) of all subsidiaries of the Mikron Group, the owner of the Mikron trademark and the treasury center for the Mikron Group. The CFO and a small Group finance team are employed by the operating Swiss company, and costs are charged back to Mikron Holding AG. Excluding the net finance result of CHF 28.7 million (prior year: CHF -25.7 million), the trademark fees charged to the companies nearly covered the costs incurred. In the 2021 financial year, a dividend income of CHF 0.1 million from subsidiaries was booked (2020: CHF 4.5 million). The financial statements of Mikron Holding AG show a very high equity ratio of 96%.