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PNE Burdened by Volatile Interest Rate Results - Management Board Confirms 2023 Annual Results

Cuxhaven, Germany - The internationally operating PNE Group recorded a decline in operating profit in the first nine months of 2023 compared to the same period of the previous year. However, PNE CEO Markus Lesser confirms the guidance for the 2023 fiscal year with a positive result on an EBITDA basis of between euro 30 and 40 million.

Despite operating profit: volatile net interest income weighs on earnings after nine months

For the first nine months of 2023, the PNE Group reported total aggregate output of euro 156.9 million (9M 2022: euro 152.1 million), revenues of euro 75.1 million (9M 2022: euro 76.7 million) and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of euro 16.5 million (9M 2022: euro 21.1 million). The reported basic earnings per share of euro -0.33 (9M 2022: euro 0.09) continue to be mainly influenced by interest income from subsequent valuations of the interest rate swaps and loan liabilities held by the Group, PNE announced. In the previous year, the interest result from the valuations made a positive contribution to the result for the period. In the first nine months of 2023, however, it was negative.

Project delays in the wind industry

In a difficult market environment, PNE is satisfied with the result achieved after nine months. Markus Lesser, CEO of PNE AG. " Our countermeasures have worked and our resilient business model is helping to cushion the impact. Nevertheless, we are not immune to projects being postponed."

Numerous factors lead to project delays. For example, delays in transport permits mean that some projects have to be postponed until 2024. In addition to volatile supply chains due to the war in Ukraine, higher interest rates and further increases in material costs are also having a negative impact, according to PNE.

Record level: PNE project pipeline with high growth

The capacity of wind and solar projects in the pipeline has once again risen sharply from 11,430 MW to 17,527 MW compared to the same period of the previous year. Wind energy accounts for 11,320 MW, of which 8,820 MW are onshore (on land) and 2,500 MW are offshore wind projects (at sea). The solar project pipeline climbed from 4,049 to 6,207 MW.

In Germany alone, the PNE Group had a nominal output of 2,529 MW (prior year period: 2,004 MW) under development. Nine wind farms with a nominal output of 204.7 MW were under construction in Germany at the end of September 2023, including one service project. Construction has begun on another wind power project with 10.8 MW in France.

Expansion of own generation expected to exceed target

Compared to the same period of the previous year, PNE was able to increase its own generation capacity by 65 MW to approx. 348 MW at the end of the third quarter. In the fourth quarter, PNE plans to start construction on three projects with a capacity of 69.6 MW and to complete or partially complete five projects with 58.9 MW. Together with the other wind farms under construction, the target of the "Scale up" strategy of 500 MW in operation or under construction by the end of 2023 is expected to be significantly exceeded, according to PNE.

Source: IWR Online, Nov 11 2023