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Gurit has reported unaudited sales results for the first half of 2021. Net sales for this period were CHF 258.6 million which is a decline of -­8.5% at constant exchange rates or ­­-8.0% in reported CHF versus prior year.
As expected, net sales in the first half year were impacted by a temporarily reduced demand for wind blades in China in 2021 as a result of the expiry of the Chinese wind feed-in tariffs by year-end 2020, and by an accelerating decrease in balsa demand and price.
Composite Materials achieved net sales of CHF 118.2 million for the first half of 2021. This represents a decrease of -12.9% at constant exchange rates compared to the first half of 2020. The decrease is mainly due to lower wind demand in China and globally reduced volumes and prices in balsa. While the company believes the slowdown in China is temporary, it also assumes that the trend to replace balsa by PET is permanent and adjusts its balsa operations accordingly.
Kitting recorded net sales of CHF 95.2 million for the first half of 2021. This is a decrease of -13.7% at constant exchange rates compared to the first half of the prior year. Kitting net sales were also negatively impacted compared to prior year due to the slowdown in China as well as lower material pricing.
Tooling saw an increase in first half of 2021 net sales by 19.6% at constant exchange rates compared to the first half of 2020 to CHF 55.4 million. The growth is mainly due to the timing of orders of western wind turbine OEMs and blade manufacturers in the first quarter of this year, while for the second half-year the company anticipates a weakening of the tooling market in general and particularly in China.
Gurit reached an Operating Profit of CHF 18.6 million with a margin of 7.2% which includes expenses of CHF 7.4 million to adjust the balsa footprint and consolidate the kitting operation for America in Mexico. In addition, the company faced significant start-up costs for its new PET extruder facilities. The Profit for 1HY of 2021 amounted to CHF 10.3 million and 4% margin of net sales.
For the year 2021, Gurit expects a revenue of around CHF 500 million and an operating profit margin of around 8% including restructuring charges. Adjusted for these one-time charges operating profit continues to be expected in the range of 9-11%. The perspectives for renewable wind energy remain positive.
After the strong wind market in 2020, Gurit expects a transition period until the market continues to grow strongly again, supported by major offshore capacity expansions globally and a strong domestic China market.
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