Munich/Salzburg, Germany/Austria (ots/PROTEXT) - - Revenues increase by 19% to EUR 75 million - Revenues in the Americas record growth of 76%, but slow-down
expected - Cost reduction measures taken to meet profitability targets Plaut AG (SCN 918 703) today publishes its figures for Q1 of fiscal 2001. Plaut, one of the leading management consulting firms offering a suite of services from strategy consulting to IT-outsourcing, increased its sales revenues from EUR 63.2 million to EUR 75.1 million, a growth of 19%. Gross profit advanced from EUR 19.1 million to EUR 23.7 million, which represents an increase of 24%. Gross margin was 31.6% (2000: 30.3%). Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) amounted, in line with budget, to EUR -1.0 million. In view of the uncertain economic environment, especially in the U.S., Plaut has taken certain cost reduction measures that have negatively impacted Q1 earnings. This is mainly attributable to a pre-emptive reduction of personnel in the US, as well as personnel reductions and other cost cutting measures in the U.K. These measures have resulted in a one-time charge of EUR 1.03 million. The consolidated loss after tax was EUR 3.4 million, as compared to a consolidated profit of ca. EUR 1 million in the first three months of the previous year. According to DVFA/SG, this corresponds to a loss per share of EUR 0.17 (2000: + EUR 0.05). Despite the economic slowdown in the US, the Americas recorded a particularly high growth rate, with an increase in revenues of 76%. With revenues of 39% of the total, the US-business contributes significantly to consolidated sales. "While we are pleased with our strong revenue growth in Q1, we are starting to see an impact of the deteriorating market environment. The restructuring steps we have taken should help to ensure that we reach our projected margins in Q3 or Q4," CEO Gary DiOrio comments. The strong performance of the European business is also encouraging. Germany and France, in particular, stand out as positive examples. In Germany, profits virtually doubled over the previous year and Q1 revenues are ahead of plan. In France, profitability also increased considerably. Dr. Nico Brunner, the board member in charge of the European Operations, adds, "This is evidence of how our wide-reaching international presence enables us to deal with adverse economic conditions in a specific region." The main sales drivers were BackOffice Solutions which alone accounted for three quarters of total sales revenues. 13% was contributed by IT & Hosting Solutions, 5% by Strategy Consulting, 4% by FrontOffice- and 3% by eBusiness Solutions. In recent weeks Plaut has secured a number of large contracts, each encompassing a volume of at least 1,000 man-days. The backlog of orders has consequently increased to ca. five months. Employees As per March 31, 2001 our head-count was at 1,985 (quarter reference date 2000: 1,765). As a result of restructuring measures, the number of employees and consultants remained virtually constant compared to the year-end head-count in fiscal 2000. Thanks to the improved structure and a more optimal utilisation of consultants, costs of sales have risen more slowly. For the current fiscal year, the company continues its plan to increase the number of employees, in particular in those business divisions with rapid expansion. About Plaut Plaut AG is an independent, internationally operating consulting group with currently 34 subsidiaries in 18 countries. As a full solution provider with a portfolio ranging from strategy consulting to IT-outsourcing, and with sales revenues of ca. EUR 291 million in 2000, Plaut is one of the worldwide leading management consulting firms. Since November 9, 1999, Plaut AG, Salzburg, has been listed on the "Neuer Markt" of Frankfurt Stock Exchange (PUT; SCN 918 703).
ots Original Text Service: Plaut AG Internet: http://recherche.newsaktuell.de Contact: You can obtain a complete version of the first-quarter-report, as well as any further information relating to Plaut, under www.plaut.com/ir or under the addresses below: Plaut Aktiengesellschaft Kirchhoff Consult AG Monika Kretzschmar Frank Schwarz Moserstrasse 33A Savignystraße 18 A-5020 Salzburg D-60325 Frankfurt Tel. +43 (0)662 4092-60 Tel: +49 (0)69 7474 86 0 Fax +43 (0)662 4092-15 Fax: +49 (0)69 7474 86 20 Monika.Kretzschmar@plaut.de Frank.Schwarz@kirchhoff.de