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Scandinavian Tobacco Group A/S reports strong Q1 results and raises full year guidance

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Company Announcement
No. 23/2021

                                                                                                               Copenhagen, 5 May 2021

Interim report, 1 January - 31 March 2021

Scandinavian Tobacco Group A/S reports strong Q1 results and raises full year guidance

For the first quarter of 2021, Scandinavian Tobacco Group delivered  a stronger than expected  organic growth in net sales and EBITDA. The results were driven by a continued high demand in handmade cigars in the US, synergies from the integration of Agio Cigars and the transformational programme Fuelling the Growth. Additionally, the results were positively impacted by timing of orders between quarters.

Q1 Highlights

  • Net sales were DKK 1,883 million (DKK 1,756 million) with 12.5% organic growth.
  • EBITDA before special items was DKK 527 million (DKK 326 million) with 49.1% organic growth. The EBITDA margin was 28.0% (18.5%).
  • Adjusted Earnings Per Share (EPS) were DKK 3.4 (DKK 1.6).
  • Free cash flow before acquisitions was DKK 89 million (DKK 122 million).
  • Return on Invested Capital was 10.7% (7.5%).
  • The integration of Agio Cigars is ahead of plan. Expected cost savings revised up.

Demand and consumer behaviour remain positively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic with high consumption of handmade cigars and smoking tobacco products in the US. The integration of Agio Cigars is running ahead of schedule and is now expected to deliver about DKK 100 million in synergies for the year and about DKK 250 million run-rate by the end of 2022. The combined market shares for machine-rolled cigars in key European markets continue to develop satisfactorily.  

The COVID-19 pandemic is creating significant uncertainty for Scandinavian Tobacco Group in the second half of the year. Consumption of handmade cigars and purchasing patterns between online and brick & mortar retail stores in the US cannot be forecasted with the normal level of accuracy. Both are factors with significant impact on the Group’s performance. Consequently, a range is introduced for the expected organic EBITDA performance as well as the cash flow before acquisitions. The financial outlook for 2021 has been revised:

  • EBITDA: Organic growth in the range of 12%-18% (>7%) 
  • Free cash flow before acquisitions: In the range of DKK 1.0-1.3 billion (>DKK 1.0 billion)
  • Adjusted Earnings Per Share >25% increase (>10% increase)

CEO Niels Frederiksen: “Despite the continued challenges and uncertainty created by the COVID-19 pandemic, our business continues to do well. For the first quarter of the year we can present strong growth in both net sales and EBITDA. I am particularly pleased to see that numerous initiatives across the organization are resulting in strong net sales, growing market shares as well as increased operational performance and efficiency.”

For further information, please contact:
Investors: Torben Sand, Head of IR, phone +45 5084 7222 or torben.sand@st-group.com

Media: Simon Mehl Augustesen, Director of Group Communications, phone: +1 484-379-8725 or simon.augustesen@st-group.com

A conference call will be held on 6 May 2021 at 10.00 CEST. Dial-in information and an accompanying presentation will be available at investor.st-group.com around 09:00 CEST.

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