Hans Linnarson, President and CEO:
"Demand in our two largest markets continued to be challenging during the third quarter. In North America, sales were negatively impacted by the worst drought conditions for many years. In Europe, demand was adversely affected by a cautious consumer sentiment and continued unfavorable weather conditions. As expected, preseason demand for seasonal products such as snow throwers was soft.
We were able to deliver a better result in comparison to last year. Group operating income for the third quarter increased to SEK 182m (113), with Americas reporting improved result while sales and income for Europe & Asia/Pacific declined. Construction continued to improve, both in terms of sales and income.
I am also pleased to note the continued positive progress in our cash flow, which is one of our top priorities. Year to date operating cash flow rose to SEK 1,595m (-328), with clear improvements across the Group mainly from working capital improvements.
As we enter the low season, we intensify preparation of the Group for 2013; securing new product launches and enhanced customer service as well as measures to improve efficiency by reducing the fixed cost base and increasing flexibility throughout the Group. More details will be communicated during the fourth quarter 2012.
Looking ahead, we see many of our trade partners managing their inventory levels conservatively, as the global economic uncertainty is expected to continue for 2013."
- Net sales amounted to SEK 5,841m (6,410). Adjusted for exchange rate effects, net sales declined -8%.
- Operating income increased 61% to SEK 182m (113).
- Operating cash flow improved to SEK 1,503m (894).
- Earnings per share increased to SEK 0.19 (0.10).
First nine months
- Net sales amounted to SEK 26,358m (25,363). Adjusted for exchange rate effects, net sales increased 1%.
- Operating income increased 25% to SEK 2,233m (1,787).
- Operating cash flow improved to SEK 1,595m (-328).
- Earnings per share increased to SEK 2.65 (2.12).
A combined press and telephone conference, hosted by Hans Linnarson, President and CEO, and Ulf Liljedahl, CFO, will be held at Husqvarna's office on Regeringsgatan 28 in Stockholm at 10:00 CET on October 26, 2012. To participate by phone, please Dial +46 (0) 8 5052 0110 (Sweden) or +44 (0)20 7162 0077 (UK) ten minutes prior to the start of the conference. The conference call will also be audio cast live on www.husqvarnagroup.com/ir (http://wwwhusqvarna.com/ir) A replay will be available at www.husqvarnagroup.com/ir (http://wwwhusqvarna.com/ir)later the same day.
The Husqvarna Group is the world's largest producer of outdoor power products including chainsaws, trimmers, lawn mowers and garden tractors. The Group is also the European leader in consumer watering products and one of the world leaders in cutting equipment and diamond tools for the construction and stone industries. The product offering includes products for both consumers and professional users. The Group's products are sold via dealers and retailers in more than 100 countries. Net sales in 2011 amounted to SEK 30 billion, and the average number of employees was approximately 15,700.
Ulf Liljedahl, CFO, +46 8 738 94 42
Tobias Norrby, Investor Relations Manager, +46 8 738 93 35
Husqvarna Press Hotline, +46 8 738 90 80
This interim report comprises information which Husqvarna is required to disclose under the Securities Markets Act and/or the Financial Instruments Trading Act. It was released for publication at 08:00 CET on October 26, 2012.