Jena, November 9, 2009 – Intershop Communications AG (ISIN: DE000A0EPUH1), a provider of integrated e-commerce solutions, today announced its results for the first nine months of 2009.
The company generated net revenues of EUR 20.6 million in the reporting period, 1% below the comparable prior-year figure (EUR 20.8 million). Despite the general reluctance to invest due to the economic crisis, Intershop chalked up major customer contracts and offset lost revenue from Quelle, a key client. At the same time, revenue quality improved – which is clearly reflected in the increase in the gross margin from 37% to 43%.
On the earnings side, Intershop’s figures were impacted by the insolvency of the Quelle Group and the announcement of the discontinuation of Quelle Deutschland’s business operations. Impairment losses on receivables from the mail order specialist totalled EUR 824 thousand in the reporting period, of which EUR 268 thousand had already been charged in the second quarter. After closing of the quarterly statements a part of these receivables were paid by Quelle, which results in positive earnings of EUR 400 thousand in the fourth quarter.
Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) fell from EUR 1.8 million in the previous year to EUR 584 thousand in the first nine months of 2009. The previous year’s operating profit (EBIT) of EUR 1.5 million dropped to an operating loss of EUR 628 thousand; the company recorded a net loss of EUR 469 thousand following a net profit of EUR 1.1 million in the prior-year period. In addition to Quelle, earnings were affected by higher software amortization and advance costs for The Bakery, the subsidiary acquired in 2009.
Intershop Management Board member Peter Mark Droste: “Contrary to our original forecast, we currently expect 2009 revenues to be at the previous year’s level. On full-year earnings we cannot provide any forecast due to the unpredictable developments at Quelle. However, having received a further payment recently we are confident, that the negative earnings impact from Quelle will be limited. Thanks to our strong positioning in the e-commerce market, we expect that we will increase revenues and achieve clearly positive results in the coming year.”
Cash and cash equivalents amounted to EUR 5.3 million at the end of the reporting period, compared with EUR 7.9 million in the previous year. Equity declined slightly from EUR 16.3 million at the end of 2008 to EUR 16.1 million at the end of September 2009. The equity ratio remains extremely sound at 65%.
Well-stocked pipeline of new customers
The major order received from the Australian telecommunications group Telstra was one of Intershop’s most significant successes in the first nine months. This new deal represents Intershop’s largest-ever service contract with a total volume of EUR 13 million over three years. The projects making up the Telstra order got underway in the third quarter. Other key new customers acquired in the first nine months include the Munich trade fair company Messe München International and the Swiss telecommunications company Sunrise.
Intershop Communications AG (founded in Germany 1992; Prime Standard: ISH2) is the leading independent provider of omni-channel commerce solutions. Intershop offers high-performance packaged software for internet sales, complemented by all necessary services. Intershop also acts as a business process outsourcing provider, covering all aspects of online retailing up to fulfillment. Around the globe more than 300 enterprise customers, including HP, BMW, Würth, and Deutsche Telekom run Intershop solutions. Intershop is headquartered in Jena, Germany, and has offices in the United States, Europe, Australia, and China. More information about Intershop can be found online at www.intershop.com.
This news release contains forward-looking statements regarding future events or the future financial and operational performance of Intershop. Actual events or performance may differ materially from those contained or implied in such forward-looking statements. Risks and uncertainties that could lead to such difference could include, among other things: Intershop's limited operating history, the unpredictability of future revenues and expenses and potential fluctuations in revenues and operating results, significant dependence on large single customer deals, consumer trends, the level of competition, seasonality, risks related to electronic security, possible governmental regulation, and general economic conditions.