Year-end Report 2022 Sweco AB (publ)
A strong end to the year with positive development across business areas, strategic acquisitions and exciting new projects.
October – December 2022
- Net sales increased to SEK 6,732 million (5,920)
- EBITA increased to SEK 709 million (585), margin 10.5 per cent (9.9)
- EBITA increased 30 per cent year-on-year after adjustment for calendar effects
- EBIT increased to SEK 693 million (582), margin 10.3 per cent (9.8)
- Profit after tax increased to SEK 502 million (454), corresponding to SEK 1.40 per share (1.27)
January – December 2022
- Net sales increased to SEK 24,296 million (21,792)
- EBITA, excl. items affecting comparability, increased to SEK 2,225 million (2,070), margin 9.2 per cent (9.5)
- EBITA increased 8 per cent year-on-year after adjustment for calendar effects and items affecting comparability
- EBITA increased to SEK 2,225 million (2,014), margin 9.2 per cent (9.2)
- EBIT increased to SEK 2,245 million (1,974), margin 9.2 per cent (9.1)
- Net debt/EBITDA was unchanged at 0.4x (0.4)
- Net debt amounted to SEK 1,075 million (913)
- Profit after tax increased to SEK 1,652 million (1,492), corresponding to SEK 4.61 per share (4.18)
- The Board of Directors proposes a dividend distribution of SEK 2.70 per share (2.45)
Comments from President and CEO Åsa Bergman
We ended the year with a strong quarter, delivering good organic growth, improved margins across most of our business areas and an all-time-high EBITA. The improvement was driven by positive developments in fees and the billing ratio, as well as a continued momentum in recruitment.
The overall demand for our services remained good, and we continued to strengthen our order book. Our diversified and decentralised model proved its strength yet again as we kept catering to the growing demand for our expert services.
Positive development across business areas
Growth continued in the fourth quarter. Net sales increased to SEK 6,732 million (5,920), with organic growth of eight per cent, adjusted for calendar effects. EBITA increased to SEK 709 million (585), with an EBITA margin of 10.5 per cent (9.9). The EBITA improvement was driven by higher average fees, FTE growth and a higher billing ratio. The efficiency measures taken after the third quarter started to have a positive impact on costs and the billing ratio.
Seven out of eight business areas reported organic growth, and all eight reported a higher EBITA in the quarter, adjusted for calendar effects. Sweden reported an improved performance and increased margin, while Denmark continued to show strong performance and an impressive margin development. Norway, Belgium and Finland also delivered improved margins while the improvements in the Netherlands, the UK and Germany were more modest.
Strategic acquisitions and exciting new projects
In 2022, we completed a total of twelve acquisitions, welcoming close to 400 new experts to Sweco. In the fourth quarter, we completed the acquisition of Via Trafik Rådgivning A/S, Denmark’s largest specialised consultancy firm within traffic and mobility. We also completed the acquisition of Futureproofed, a Belgian climate-tech firm that guides companies and cities towards a low-carbon future through their SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) platform, which enables clients to measure, reduce and report CO2 emissions.
We then started 2023 by announcing three new acquisitions in the beginning of January, of which the Belgian firm VK architects+engineers, with 600 experts, allows us to significantly build on our positive momentum in Belgium. This acquisition is still pending approval from competition authorities.
Sweco’s strong financial position allows us to continue acting on interesting opportunities that arise.
In the quarter, we signed a new framework contract with Société du Grand Paris, responsible for designing and building the Grand Paris Express transport network. We have also been commissioned to support in the development of the new Nobel Center in Stockholm, Sweden, and to support with the implementation of a monitoring system for the electricity grid network in the UK.
Staying on course in an uncertain market
The geopolitical situation and macro-economic environment remain uncertain. Sweco’s diversified portfolio in segments, geographies and client mix however, provides a solid foundation on which we stand firmly. Combined with our solid financial position, we are well-equipped to adapt to market fluctuations.
Leveraging our legacy and experience, we keep investing and supporting our clients in projects driving the transformation of society, such as hydrogen and energy storage. This gives us an advantage in today’s market, where Europe’s energy systems are being re-designed and new infrastructure is being built. This is a vital part of our long-term strategy and will remain so going forward.
Lastly, I would like to thank all our employees, clients, and other partners for everything we have achieved during the year. We are truly transforming society together.
Anna Elisabeth OlssonHead of Press and Public Affairs