SWEDEN: Wholesaler Beijer Ref has reported a sales increase of 9.6% in Q3 despite lower prices for refrigerants.
Beijer Ref’s net sales increase, compared to the same period last year, amounted to SEK3,953m (€368m). Organic growth was 5.2%. Operating profit for the quarter was SEK 358m (€33m), an increase of 5.5% compared with the same period last year.
The increase in sales is mainly attributed to increased sales of HVAC and OEM products. Operating margins were slightly lower than the previous year (9.1% against 9.4% in 2018), mainly due to what Beijer Ref CEO Per Bertland observes as “a continuing downward price trend for refrigerants”.
Referring to refrigerant prices, he said: “Our assessment has always been that the price level will become stabilised, something that we have not yet seen. In the long run, the phasing-out programme under the European F-gas regulation, which runs until 2030, should mean a price increase for refrigerants.
“There are also tougher measures to prevent the illegal trade in refrigerants, something about which we take a positive view,” he added.
However, Bertland sees the percentage of refrigerant sales, as part of total Beijer Ref sales, falling and continuing to decrease in the future.
The Beijer Ref group’s other product segments now account for around 90% of total turnover. Sales in HVAC were 38% of turnover, up from 34% last year. Beijer Ref’s OEM products also continue to increase share of sales, accounting for 10% of turnover in Q3, up from 9% in 2018.