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Tulikivi Corporation Interim report 1–3/2024: Key projects progressing well, market situation challenging

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TULIKIVI CORPORATION  INTERIM REPORT  3 MAY 2024 AT 1 PM

- The Tulikivi Group’s first-quarter net sales were EUR 8.5 million (EUR 13.0 million, 1–3/2023).
- The Tulikivi Group’s first-quarter operating profit was EUR 0.3 (1.3) million and the profit before taxes was EUR 0.1 (1.1) million.
- The equity ratio at the end of the review period was 49.5 per cent (42.0).
- Order books stood at EUR 5.4 (16.1) million at the end of the review period.
- Based on customer feedback, the experimental products made from Suomussalmi’s Haaponen talc ore widely meet the needs of the various customer segments
- Future outlook: Net sales in 2024 are expected to be EUR 37 to 44 million and the comparable operating profit is expected to be EUR 3 to 5 million.

Key financial ratios
 1-3/24 1-3/23Change, % 1-12/23
Sales, MEUR8.513.0-35.1 %45.3
Operating profit/loss, MEUR0.31.3-75.2 %5.5
Operating profit/loss without impairment loss, MEUR0.31.3-75.2 %5.5
Profit before tax, MEUR0.11.1-88.9 %4.9
Total comprehensive income for the period, MEUR0.10.8-83.3 %3.7
Earnings per share, Euro0.000.010.06
Net cash flow from operating activities, MEUR-0.2-0.74.9
Operating profit/loss without impairment loss, %3.79.812.2
Equity ratio, %49.542.047.8
Net indebtness ratio, %61.277.958.4
Return on investments, %4.719.720.8


Comments by Heikki Vauhkonen, Managing Director:

Net sales for the first quarter declined notably from the year before, when they were exceptionally high. Despite the decline in net sales, the operating profit for the first half of the year remained at a satisfactory level. This profitability was made possible by the role of exports in sales, good cost control and successful profitability measures. Political industrial action reduced net sales for the review period by approximately EUR 0.3 million.

During the period under review, the focus was on promoting key projects in Tulikivi’s strategy. The main objectives are to grow the market share in the Central European fireplace market, to increase the net sales of the sauna business, and move the Suomussalmi talc project forward to the investment stage.

In Central Europe, the expansion of the distribution network for the new compact Jero collection continued. The Jero collection has been very well received in all market areas, by retailers and consumers alike. Consumers in Central Europe prefer products in the stove-size range, and the new Jero collection will enable Tulikivi to reach new customer groups. Tulikivi has around 350 distributors in export countries. The aim is to launch sales of the Jero range in all sales offices and increase the number of dealers by 50% by the end of 2026.  In February, Tulikivi presented the new Hari model that is part of the Jero collection at the Verona Progetto Fuoco Fair for biomass combustion equipment. Deliveries of the product will start in autumn 2024. 

The sauna business focused on launching a new collection of electric sauna heaters on the market. It will be launched for domestic and export markets during spring 2024. The collection highlights the great features of Tulikivi sauna heaters: high-quality design, energy efficiency, original materials and safety.

The results of the product testing of finely ground talc products for plastic and paint applications were completed at the end of 2023. The results were presented to potential customers and users. Based on customer feedback, experimental products made from Suomussalmi’s Haaponen talc ore already widely meet the needs of the various customer segments and are suitable for use instead of existing talc products.  It is worth noting that these are the first experimental products, and that there has not yet been time to optimise their characteristics.

During the early part of the year, work continued on exploring the utilisation of the side streams from talc production. There is particular interest in the exploitation of magnesite-rich tailings, a by-product of talc enrichment, which contain almost 40 per cent magnesium oxide by weight. Further research will focus on applications with technical and commercial potential and explore the feasibility of exploiting them together with potential users and through university collaboration.

In the first quarter, the company’s order intake was EUR 7.6 (11.1) million. In the previous winter, demand for Tulikivi products was increased by the unusually sharp rise in energy prices and the uncertainties related to energy availability.  The company’s order books normalised following the peak in demand in 2023 and came to EUR 5.4 (16.1) million at the end of the review period.

During the review period, Tulikivi concluded a supply agreement for the sale of crushed soapstone, a quarrying side stream, to an industrial-scale thermal energy storage facility in Pornainen, delivered by Polar Night Energy. Energy storage takes advantage of the traditional strengths of soapstone, such as its good thermal conductivity and retention properties. The cooperation supports Tulikivi’s goal of achieving the highest possible exploitation rate for the raw material.

TULIKIVI CORPORATION

Board of Directors

Distribution: Nasdaq Helsinki
Key media
www.tulikivi.com

Further information: Heikki Vauhkonen, Managing Director, tel. +358 (0)40 524 5593

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