- Consolidated revenue down 7.7 % year-on-year to € 229.3 million due to economic factors
- EBIT at € 19.6 million, by 3.9% slightly below previous year
- Dining & Lifestyle Division up 3.0 % on the previous year
- Full-year earnings forecast for 2023 still confirmed
Consolidated revenue: € 229.3 million
The Villeroy & Boch Group generated consolidated revenue (including licence income) of € 229.3 million in the first quarter of 2023. Due to economic factors, this was € 19.2 million or 7.7 % less than the very good figure for the first quarter of the previous year. Revenue in the Group’s main region of EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa) declined by 10.7 % or € 22.1 million. This was due in particular to the weak performance in Germany, where revenue fell by 14.3 % or € 11.1 million. By contrast, revenue in Southern Europe increased by 23.6 % or € 2.3 million. Revenue growth of 6.8 % was recorded overseas, with revenue in the Asia/Pacific region climbing by 16.6 % or € 5.1 million. Incoming orders increased in the first quarter of 2023, rising by € 5.7 million as against 31 December 2022 to total € 143.0 million. € 113.7 million (31 December 2022: € 116.9 million) of this relates to the Bathroom & Wellness Division and € 29.3 million (31 December 2022: € 20.4 million) to the Dining & Lifestyle Division.
EBIT: € 19.6 million
The Group generated EBIT of € 19.6 million in the first quarter of 2023, down only slightly on the previous year (€ 20.4 million). Encouragingly, the weak revenue performance was largely offset through lower procurement costs and savings in structural costs.
Development in the divisions
The Bathroom & Wellness Division generated revenue of € 150.8 million in the first quarter of 2023, down 12.4 % on the extremely strong first quarter of the previous year (€ 172.1 million). The economic slowdown in Europe meant the downturn in revenue was particularly pronounced in the ceramic sanitary ware business (€ -8.8 million) and the wellness business (€ -7.1 million), where the sales trend declined mainly due to the existing restrictions on the operation of outdoor spas. By contrast, new products such as toilets with new flush technology met with a positive market response. Thanks to the sustained strength of the Group’s project business, it achieved substantial revenue growth in Asia with market-specific products including ViClean shower toilets in particular. EBIT in the Bathroom & Wellness Division was essentially unchanged at € 17.4 million in the first quarter of 2023 (previous year: € 17.7 million) as the downturn in earnings due to revenue development was offset by falling procurement prices, especially for energy.
The Dining & Lifestyle Division generated revenue of € 77.7 million in the first quarter of 2023, up 3.0 % on the previous year. Revenue growth was recorded across almost all sales channels in the first quarter of 2023. Project business with hotel and restaurant customers saw particularly strong growth of € 2.7 million on the back of the Group’s pronounced focus on the high-end segment. Thanks in particular to the encouraging revenue development and decreasing purchasing costs, the Dining & Lifestyle Division ended the quarter with operating EBIT of € 5.6 million, up € 1.9 million on the previous year (€ 3.7 million).
The Group invested € 6.0 million in property, plant and equipment and intangible assets in the first quarter of 2023 (previous year: € 3.3 million). The Bathroom & Wellness Division accounted for € 4.3 million, with the remaining € 1.7 million attributable to the Dining & Lifestyle Division. Investment activity in the Bathroom & Wellness Division concentrated on pressure casting machines and a photovoltaic system in Hungary and a new vertical moulding machine in Belgium. Investment in the Dining & Lifestyle Division mainly related to the modernisation of the production facilities in Merzig and Torgau, the acquisition of new pressing tools and the modernisation of the Group’s own retail stores.
Outlook for 2023 as a whole
Global economic development slowed further in the first three months of the 2023 financial year. Although the energy market and supply chain situation eased considerably, the ramifications of the ongoing war in Ukraine and high inflation are continuing to have a pronounced impact on the world economy.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects the global economy to continue to slow. According to its most recent World Economic Outlook published in April, the war in Ukraine and high inflation are inhibiting the economic recovery, resulting in a slight downward revision of the global economic growth forecast for 2023 to 2.8 %. Based on business performance in the first three months of the current financial year, the Management Board of Villeroy & Boch AG now expects consolidated revenue for 2023 to be at the same level as in the previous year. The forecasts regarding the operating result, the return on net operating assets and capital expenditure remain unchanged. However, the possibility that the further development of the Ukraine war could have a more pronounced economic impact on the construction sector and future private consumer behaviour cannot be ruled out, which would negatively impact the performance of the Villeroy & Boch Group in the second half of 2023.