Cramo plc, a Helsinki, Finland-based rental company with operations in a dozen countries in eastern and central Europe and the Nordic countries, posted consolidated first-half sales of €216.2 (about U.S. $307 million), a 23-percent decline compared with €280.8 million in the first six months of 2008. EBITDA for the half was €6.3 million (about U.S. $8.9 million), an 86.9-percent decrease compared with €48.1 million for last year’s first half.
The company blamed the decline on weaker demand and tighter price competition. The biggest sales decrease occurred in central and eastern Europe. Sales continued to decrease in Finland, Sweden and Denmark, while sales grew in Norway. EBITDA was positive in Sweden, Finland and Norway, but profitability was weak in Denmark and central and eastern Europe.
Cramo expects the economic environment to continue to be soft for the rest of 2009, with construction decreasing throughout the company’s market areas. The company will continue its cost-cutting measures to remain profitable, officials said.