EVN earnings climb as equity ratio drops

Energy provider EVN AG managed to increase its earnings in the past business year.The Lower Austrian company said today (Thurs) that its earnings before interest and taxes (Ebit) jumped by 6.9 per cent year on year to 187.3 million Euros in the 2009/2010 business year which ended on 30 September.The firm’s turnover edged up by 0.9 per cent to 2.752 billion Euros, while its net debt rose by 5.8 per cent to 1.458 billion Euros. EVN’s equity ratio declined by 1.8 per cent to 44.9 per cent as its net assets shrunk from 3.127 billion Euros to 3.025 billion Euros.EVN managed to earn significantly more by selling gas to households and business customers. Its gas sale turnover rose year on year by 12 million Euros to 351 million Euros. Turnover generated by selling electricity improved from 1.929 billion Euros to 1.903 billion Euros.The firm, which is based in Maria Enzersdorf, reported a 17-million-Euro turnover decline for its operations in southern Europe, while its Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) turnover rose from 170 million Euros to 189 million Euros in the past business year. It generated 1.701 billion Euros from energy sales in Austria, slightly more than in the 2008/2009 business year (1.679 billion Euros).EVN is listed on the prime market of the Vienna Stock Exchange (WBAG). This morning one share was worth 11.20 Euros. The provincial government of Lower Austria is the firm’s major stakeholder with an interest of 51 per cent.The company has around 8,500 employees, of whom 2,500 work at its facilities in Austria.EVN’s 2009/2010 business year report came just one day after chairman Burkhard Hofer caused a stir by revealing he will resign next year. Hofer, who joined the energy provider 30 years ago, headed the firm since 2005. His contract as was extended for another three years in September 2009. Hofer cited “private reasons” for his decision.