Czech Pegas makes 8.6 mln euro loss in Q4

today Mar 19, 2009
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PRAGUE, March 19 (Reuters) - Czech artificial textiles maker Pegas Nonwovens (PGSNsp.PR)PGSN.WA said on Thursday it made a fourth-quarter net loss of 8.6 million euros ($11.6 million), worse than the 6.4 million loss expected by analysts.

The company said the group result, which compares with a profit of 9.65 million euros a year ago, was hit by non-cash currency translations due to the depreciation of the local crown.

Operating profit was 4.9 million euros, down from 5.08 million a year ago, and below the 5.65 million average estimate from analysts polled by Reuters.

Revenues ticked up to 32 million from last year's 31.24 million, versus analysts' estimate of 32.7 million.

The company's shares were down 1.73 percent at 232.4 crowns, while Prague's main PX index .PX was up 2.63 percent.

Pegas, which produces textiles for hygiene products such as babies' nappies, also said it expected 2009 earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) no more than 10 percent lower than 2008, when it was 39.5 million euros.

"Last year we managed to retain good financial performance and deliver growth of the main financial indicators of the company," Pegas board member Frantisek Rezac said.

"Even though our company is not entirely shielded from the unfolding global recession, our firm foothold in the comparably stable hygiene markets will ensure ongoing performance and solid financial results in 2009," he said.

A sharp decline in polymer prices resulted in lower input costs in the first quarter of 2009, while revenues still reflected higher sales prices from the fourth quarter of 2008, the company said in a statement.

As a result, the first quarter 2009 EBTIDA is likely to be significantly higher than those in the upcoming quarter, the company said. (Reporting by Jason Hovet and Jana Mlcochova, editing by Will Waterman) ($1=.7412 Euro)

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