Solar shows profit despite current slowdown

Solar A/S, headquartered in Kolding, Denmark, turned over some DKK 8bn (€ 1,071.6m) in the first nine months of 2011 and generated earnings before tax of some DKK 38m (€ 5.1m).

This listed group is working its way strategically towards becoming the leading technical wholesaler by expanding its product ranges and technical knowhow within electrical, heating, plumbing and ventilation products. At group-level, these efforts resulted in an overall Q1-Q3 organic growth of 4.2%.

- While we have seen organic growth in all four key markets - Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands – we are very aware of the general slowdown and financial unrest that have gained strength over the last quarter, emphasises Group CEO Flemming H. Tomdrup.

At present, there is a risk of more traditional, large business areas relating to new construction, such as installation equipment and cables, generating negative growth in 2012.

- This is countered by the business areas renewable energy, lighting, energy supply and infrastructure which are expected to return positive growth rates in 2012. Also, we expect sales of industrial components to increase slightly in 2012, up from the 2011 levels, says Group CEO Flemming H. Tomdrup.

Energy optimisation possible profit booster
Energy optimisation such as lighting projects and renovations and upgrades of existing buildings, especially public ones, is on the rise. Positive trends are definitely expected and this field may end up a profit booster.

- In Denmark, we have been pleased to learn that the new government will continue to grant tax relief in connection with year-round residence renovations throughout 2012. Also, the idea of establishing a green subsidy pool scheme, allowing homeowners to apply for subsidies when making energy-efficient housing renovations, is in keeping with our strategic focus, underlines Group CEO Flemming H. Tomdrup.

Recent acquisitions open up new markets
The addition to Solar of four electrical wholesalers in the Netherlands, Germany, Austria and Belgium presents new vistas for the group.

- As we have often stated, we aim strategically at growth and improved market presence through acquisitions, and these recent acquisitions certainly match this line. Moreover, they give us increased volume and open up the two new markets Austria and Belgium, states Group CEO Flemming H. Tomdrup.

Please contact any of the below for further comments:
Group CEO Flemming H. Tomdrup at tel. +45 7930 0201
Group CFO Michael H. Jeppesen at tel. +45 7930 0262
Corporate IR & Communications Manager Charlotte Risskov Kræfting at mobile +45 4034 2908.

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Facts about Solar

Solar A/S (formerly Aktieselskabet Nordisk Solar Compagni) was founded in 1919 and listed on the Copenhagen Stock Exchange in 1953.  Solar is one of Northern Europe’s leading technical wholesalers within electrical, heating, plumbing and ventilation products. The group based in Kolding, Denmark, has subsidiaries operating under the Solar brand in Denmark incl. the Faroe Islands, Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands, Germany and Poland, while also comprising Conelgro B.V. in the Netherlands, Claessen ELGB in Belgium, GFI Gesellschaft für Installationstechnik mbH in Germany and GFI GmbH in Austria. Furthermore, Aurora Group operates in Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland. The Solar Group has approximately 3,500 employees.