Aggreko, world leader in temporary power and temperature control, dropped 8 percent in total group revenues compared to the same period in 2008, the company said last week in an interim management statement. On a constant currency basis, and excluding pass-through fuel, group revenues dropped 16 percent.
However, group margins benefited from a strong performance in its International Power Projects business, which grew by 10 percent year over year. There was also growth in order intake for new work, with a higher number of megawatts quoted compared with the previous two quarters.
Conditions in the Local business continue to be difficult, the company said, with revenues in constant currency down 28 percent. The third and fourth quarters are difficult to measure because of the strong boosts the company realized in those quarters in 2008, with record storm revenues in North America plus the Beijing Olympics. In constant currency, North America revenues fell 33 percent; Europe and the Middle East plunged 15 percent and revenues in international local business were down 42 percent. Trading margins in local business fell 6 percentage points year over year, but remain healthy as a result of cost control measures.
The company had a similar amount of power on rent in the third quarter as in the same period in 2008, but the temperature control business dropped substantially, with low ambient temperatures accentuating weak demand. Rates are weak in all product areas.
Net debt decreased by £61 million to £227 million (about U.S. $370 million), reflecting lower levels of capital expenditure.
The company believes the International Power Projects business will perform well in the fourth quarter and expects Local business not to get worse. For the full year, Aggreko expects constant-currency profits to be slightly higher than in 2008.
Based in Scotland, with U.S. headquarters in Houston, Aggreko North America is No. 10 on the RER 100.