- Due to electronic component shortages, SMA Solar said its 9M/2021 sales dropped 4% annually to €745 million
- It is working with 2nd source suppliers to mitigate effects and increased selling price to reflect increased material and freight costs
- Total order backlog as of September 30, 2021 totaled €922 million, 8% up from €855 million as on December 31, 2020
- High order backlog may lead to ‘significant sales growth overall’ in 2022, but expects material shortages to continue to affect business during H1/2022
German solar inverter company SMA Solar Technology AG saw its 9M/2021 sales decline 4% YoY to €745 million, short of its original expectations. The main reasons were a ‘considerably tighter supply situation’ for electronic components and project delays in the large scale and project solutions segment.
SMA’s management fears the situation to impact its business performance in Q4/2021 as well when revenues are likely to drop sequentially due to continued supply constraints and high module prices leading to projects being postponed.
To deal with the shortages, it is working with 2nd source suppliers to mitigate effects. It said, selling prices now reflect increased material and freight costs.
It attributes the slight decline in sales to the Business Solutions segment where ‘small and medium-sized businesses were still reluctant to invest in the first few months of the year due to the continuing uncertainties surrounding the
coronavirus pandemic’. The other 2 business segments, namely Home Solutions and Large Scale & Project Solutions segments recorded an increase in sales despite the shortage, it noted.
The general shortage of materials and to meet the strong project pipeline in the Large Scale and Project Solutions segments led SMA Solar to resort to increased stockpiling which depleted its net cash that dropped to €169 million till September 2021, from €226 million till December 2020.
SMA Solar was still able to increase its net income to €15.3 million in the reporting period, up from €9.2 million in 9M/2020.
In September 2021, the company had lowered its group sales and EBITDA guidance for 2021 citing the same reasons (see SMA Solar Lowers Financial Forecast For 2021). It continues to stick to the same guidance of group sales between €960 million and €1.03 billion, and EBITDA of €50 million to €65 million.
During 9M/2021, SMA Solar’s EBITDA reached €52.9 million with EBITDA margin of 7.1%, increasing its profitability on YoY basis while selling 10.3 GW worth of inverters, also a 4% decline from 10.65 GW sold a year back.
Going forward, the German company is more confident of 2022 which it expects to enter with a high order backlog, anticipating ‘significant sales growth overall’. Its order backlog for products increased to €430 million at the end of Q3/2021; that’s 11% higher compared to the end of 2020. Total order backlog (comprising both products and services) as of September 30, 2021 totaled €922 million, 8% up from €855 million as on December 31, 2020.
Nonetheless, management expects material shortages to continue to affect business during H1/2022.