SWEDEN: Strong growth in key European markets has seen Beijer Ref third-quarter sales increase by 3.8% and operating profit jumping 25% compared to last year.
Buoyed by a warm summer in Southern and Central Europe, net sales by the Swedish refrigeration wholesaling group increased to SEK2,555m (€265m). Operating profit was SEK217m (€22.5m) up from SEK173m (€18m) on the same period last year.
The increasing pace of the phase-out of high GWP refrigerants is said to be largely behind this growth in Europe. The UK returned an increase of 16%, with France reporting organic growth of 9%.
“The phase-out of refrigerants with a negative climate impact is continuing,” said Beijer Ref CEO Per Bertland. “Import restrictions are also causing rising prices for these refrigerants, which had a positive impact on the Group’s profit. In parallel, demand for greener alternatives is growing,” he added.
Investment in the production of Beijer Ref’s own green refrigeration systems continues, with Per Bertland reporting growth in its OEM activities of almost 6%. The supply of its first transcritical CO2 refrigeration system to the retail giant Metro in China is expected to bring further orders in this market. Beijer Ref’s CUBO2 Smart refrigeration system for small stores is said to have been well received in several European countries and is being launched in Australia in the next quarter.
“Sales are increasing by 3% in the Nordic region and 5% in Eastern Europe,” Bertland reported. “There is also stable development in Asia Pacific, with growth of 5%. Sales of air conditioning units are high, and the restructuring of operations in Australia is now having a positive impact on profit.”