• Order bookings rose 5 percent to SEK 3,701 M (3,539). Based on unchanged exchange rates order bookings rose 10 percent. Order backlog January 31, 2008 was at an all time high level of SEK 4,581 M. • Net sales rose 7 percent to SEK 3,285 M (3,082). Based on unchanged exchange rates net sales rose 11 percent. • Operating profit rose 9 percent to SEK 267 M (246) and operating margin was 8 percent (8). • Profit after taxes was SEK 174 M (183). Profit per share after dilution was SEK 1.91 (1.95). • Cash flow from operating activities improved by SEK 187 M to positive SEK 89 M (neg. 98). Cash flow after investments was negative SEK 35 M (neg. 324). Acquisitions were included with SEK 95 M (144). • Recognizing the challenge in delivering high volumes in the fourth quarter, Elekta reiterates the full year outlook of net sales growth in local currency over 12 percent and operating profit growth of 25-30 percent. • In March, Elekta concluded the acquisition of CMS, a leader in the development, sales and support of advanced radiation therapy planning solutions, for a total cash consideration representing an enterprise value of USD 75 M.
President & CEO Tomas Puusepp comments:
”In the third quarter of fiscal year 2007/08, we saw a continued strong demand. Order intake for the first 9 months increased by 10 percent in local currency, driven primarily by a continued success in radiation therapy in North America, a stronger interest in Leksell Gamma Knife® in Europe and a strong recovery on the Chinese market. Order bookings for the third quarter in isolation, shows moderate growth in local currency, explained by the large European orders that were received in the comparison quarter.
On the market for linear accelerator systems, Elekta continues to gain market share, pri-marily as a result of significantly larger volumes to North America, where Elekta’s tech-nology for image guided radiation therapy together with the strength in the Elekta-IMPAC combination, is resulting in Elekta gaining many new customers.
The smaller markets where Elekta sells its products through distributors are more vola-tile. So far during this fiscal year, we have seen fewer orders from the distributor mar-kets, while we at the same time have a strong pipeline for Q4 and onwards.
Demand for Elekta’s software systems, primarily marketed under the IMPAC brand, re-mains on a high level. However, with more business to medical oncology and to non-English speaking countries, the installation and adaptation processes are prolonged. In the third quarter, this resulted in lower net sales and slightly lower operating result than expected. In the forth quarter, we expect to complete installations, and thus recognize revenue, for a large number of software projects.
On the market for radiosurgical treatment of brain disorders, Leksell Gamma Knife is holding a strong position. Leksell Gamma Knife® Perfexion™ is a significant improvement to its users both in terms of number of treatable patients as efficiency in the treat-ment process. For this fiscal year, I expect that the number of delivered Leksell Gamma Knife units will increase by over 30 percent with the growth coming predominantly from the European market. A large majority of these deliveries are Leksell Gamma Knife Per-fexion.
Thanks to the enhanced and unique capabilities of Leksell Gamma Knife Perfexion, we have the opportunity to address new clinical applications and position Gamma Knife surgery among other modalities also within conventional radiation oncology.
A milestone in the development of Elekta is the acquisition of CMS and I am very pleased that we could complete this process according to plan. Short term it means a stronger more comprehensive product portfolio. In a longer perspective, it dramatically strengthens our ability to develop advanced software systems for radiation therapy planning. This acquisition is fully in line with our acquisition and collaboration strat-egy and significantly strengthens our ability to address the entire radiation therapy value chain.
The operating result for the 9 months period increased by 9 percent, which indicate an underlying (taken currency effects in consideration) improvement of about 26 percent. On a rolling 12 months basis operating margin was 11 percent.
Business already in the backlog together with contracts for delivery in April 2008 where we right now are firming up shipment schedules, sums up to the expectation that we will see high delivery volumes in the fourth quarter. This is expected to result in a net sales growth of 20 percent (in local currency) for the fourth quarter in isolation.
I am confident in our capacity to carry out these high volumes according to plan. How-ever, we are dependent on customers being able to accept delivery in the agreed timeframe.
Based on the high expected delivery volumes in the fourth quarter and resulting high operational margins, I expect that Elekta will grow net sales this year by over 12 percent in local currency and improve operating profit with 25-30 percent.