In the first half of 2021, PNE AG continued to develop successfully in operational and financial terms as a result of the successful development of further wind farm projects, the start of construction and sale of wind farms in Germany and abroad as well as the positive course of business in the service sector. This is shown in the half-year report published today.
In the first six months, the Group recorded total aggregate output of euro 93.9 million (prior year: euro 77.0 million), earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of euro 13.3 million (prior year: euro 9.0 million), operating profit (EBIT) of euro 2.3 million (prior year: euro 0.6 million) and undiluted earnings per share of euro 0.01 (prior year: euro -0.07).
Due to the intense expansion of PNE's internally operated wind farm portfolio, the total aggregate output is significantly higher than last year. The Group's segments "project development" and "service products" showed high growth rates in total aggregate output and EBITDA compared to the same period of the previous year. In the "electricity generation" segment, total aggregate output and EBITDA were negatively affected by the weak wind conditions in the first half of the year.
"Hidden reserves" created with the establishment of the wind farm portfolio
The results are strongly influenced by the development of the internally operated wind farm portfolio. PNE has created "hidden reserves" that are not immediately apparent. As a result of the investments in PNE's own projects, pre-tax profits totalling euro 100.3 million were eliminated at Group level, of which euro 18.7 million in the first half of 2021 (prior year: euro 6.9 million). In spite of the "hidden reserves", the Group reported equity of euro 197.8 million as at June 30, 2021 (as at December 31, 2020: euro 200.6 million) and an equity ratio of 27.1 percent (as at December 31, 2020: 30.2 percent).
Goal for the entire year confirmed
Markus Lesser, CEO of PNE AG: "The results of the first six months are very pleasing, especially against the background of the investments in our own portfolio. We are thus fully on target and reconfirm our goal for the year as a whole: We will make further upfront investments for the strategic expansion of the business model and invest significantly in the further expansion of our own portfolio of wind farms. Nevertheless, we are expecting Group EBITDA of euro 24 to 32 million in respect of our guidance for the 2021 fiscal year."
Dynamic course of project development
The first half of 2021 showed a dynamic course of project development. On June 30, PNE had wind energy projects with a total capacity of approx. 259.5 MW under construction for its own account and for customers, including seven wind farms in Germany with a nominal output of approx. 128 MW. PNE completed two wind farms with approx. 17 MW for the internally operated wind farm portfolio. In Sweden, the construction of a wind farm on behalf of a customer was completed, and the project was put into operation. In Poland, a project already sold was commissioned in spring, and the construction of two further wind farms has been continued.
In the first half of the year, PNE was successful with two recently approved projects (30.4 MW) in tenders in Germany. Construction of these projects has already begun. In addition, PNE obtained approvals for two further projects (16.8 MW) in France.
Successful project sales
In Romania, three wind farm projects with a nominal output of up to 221 MW were sold. PNE is involved in the further development of these wind farms up to the buyer’s financing decision within the framework of a development cooperation arrangement. In France, PNE sold a wind farm project with approx. 13 MW, which is now under construction. Sales processes for wind energy projects are currently underway in the USA and Poland, some of which are expected to be completed this year. A sales success was achieved in August for a project in South Africa with 140 MW.
Internal operations strengthened
PNE expanded its own wind farm portfolio to 151.6 MW in the first half of the year. Further wind farms with approx. 128 MW are under construction for PNE's own portfolio, some of which will be commissioned this year. This brings the Group step by step closer to the goal of expanding internal operations to up to 500 MW by the end of 2023.
Wind and PV project pipeline continues to grow
PNE is well positioned for the further development in its core business of project development and operation. The pipeline of onshore wind energy projects in the various phases of project development was expanded to 5,679 MW in spite of the continuous realisation of wind farms. This is a very good basis for the further development of the PNE Group.
There was also significant progress in the first six months in the development of photovoltaic projects. In this field, PNE was able to expand the volume of projects in progress to 794 MWp. PV projects are currently being developed in seven European and North American countries. This, too, is an important component of the strategic further development of the PNE Group.
In the "service products" segment, which bundles the services offered by the PNE Group relating to the development and operation of wind farm projects, the expansion of the service strategy and the necessary investments in equipment had an impact on the results. PNE recorded an increasing number of external orders. Internationalisation, including in Sweden and Poland, was strengthened.