Profitability in spite of difficult market conditions

The consolidated sales of the Van Leeuwen Pipe and Tube Group were € 623.3 million, a decrease of 3% compared to 2014 (€ 642.7 million). A key part of the decrease was due to the lower average selling price
per ton. The tonnage sold remained stable in comparison to the previous year. The gross margin on sales was € 115.4 million or 18.5% of the consolidated sales (2014: 19.0%).

Costs remained stable at approximately € 110 million. The effect of cost saving measures was offset by approximately € 1.5 million in one-off costs to implement these measures and by foreign currency effects. The operating result (EBIT) was € 4.5 million and as such was € 7.4 million lower than in 2014 (€ 11.9 million). The operating result excluding one-off elements was approximately € 6 million in 2015, compared to approximately € 12 million in 2014. The result from participating interests was € 1.5 million due to a book profit on the sale of the participating interest in Benteler Distribution Deutschland. The tax burden was minus 3% due to different tax rates in countries outside the Netherlands. The net result decreased by € 3.7 million and came out at € 4.0 million (2014: € 7.7 million).

The operating working capital increased by € 6.7 million to € 205.0 million (2014: € 198.3 million). The Group’s cash position and its bank facilities are more than enough to meet financing requirements. Group equity amounts to € 162.3 million (2014: € 160.5 million). This represents an increase compared to last year and is in part due to foreign currency effects. Solvency significantly improved to 46.0% (2014: 41.5%).