Alstom 2016/17 results
- 10 billion order intake leading to a record backlog of 34.8 billion
- 7.3 billion sales up 6%
- Adjusted EBIT at 421 million up 15%
- Positive free cash flow at 182 million
- Proposed dividend of 0.25 per share
- 2020 objectives confirmed
Between 1 April 2016 and 31 March 2017, Alstom booked 10.0 billion of orders leading to a new record-breaking backlog of 34.8 billion. Over the same period, sales were up 6% (5% organically), amounting to 7.3 billion. The adjusted EBIT increased to 421 million, 15% above last year, leading to an adjusted EBIT margin of 5.8%. Net income (Group share) reached 289 million.
Alstom benefits from a very strong balance sheet. During fiscal year 2016/17, free cash flow amounted to 182 million. Net debt remained stable at 208 million on 31 March 2017. Equity amounted to 3.7 billion at 31 March 2017.
At its next Shareholders Meeting planned on 4 July 2017, Alstom will propose a dividend of 0.25 per share.
"During 2016/17, Alstom has continued to implement its 2020 strategy. With 10 billion orders for the third year in a row, Alstom has now reached leadership positions on all continents. We are particularly proud to have been awarded the first contract for high speed trains in the USA. Alstoms unique integration capability and its operational excellence have enabled a solid delivery of its record backlog. A particular focus has also been put on innovation with the launch of the first hydrogen train as well as a number of digital solutions that meet new customer needs and passenger expectations. In that context, Alstom proposes to resume the distribution of dividends and confirms its 2020 targets," said Henri Poupart-Lafarge, Alstom Chairman and Chief Executive Officer..
2020 strategy on track
Alstom 2020 strategy is based on the five following pillars:
1. Customer focused organisation
The Group confirmed its leading position with a high level of orders of 10,008 million booked in the fiscal year 2016/17. This compares to 10,636 million over the same period last year which included a 3.2 billion contract in India.
Alstom was awarded several major projects during this year. The Group signed contracts with Amtrak in the United States for new generation of Avelia high-speed train and services. The Alstom-led consortium Expolink won a contract with RTA for the extension of Dubai Metros Red line. The Alstom-Bombardier consortium was selected to renew suburban trains in France. Other commercial successes included suburban and regional trains in Netherlands, Germany, Italy, France and Australia, high-speed trains in France and Italy, new metro cars in Peru and France, as well as maintenance contracts in Canada and in the United Kingdom.
Backlog reached a record high and amounted to 34.8 billion on 31 March 2017, including around 30% services.
2. Complete range of solutions
In fiscal year 2016/17, Alstoms total sales reached 7,306 million, up 6% (5% organically). The book-to-bill remained strong, above 1.4.
Signalling, systems and services represented 57% of sales in 2016/17, in line with 2020 objective of 60%. Systems sales increased by 27% with progress of Riyadh and Guadalajara metro systems in Saudi Arabia and Mexico, urban systems deliveries in Brazil and Qatar, as well as infrastructure projects in the United Kingdom. Signalling sales growth of 19% was supported by the integration of GE Signalling and deliveries in the United Kingdom and in Canada. Services slightly decreased at 1.5 billion of sales with an adverse forex impact on maintenance contract in the United Kingdom. Rolling stock reached 3.2 billon of sales with deliveries of suburban, regional and high-speed trains in Europe, on-going execution of the PRASA project in South Africa and tramway deliveries in Algeria.
3. Value creation through innovation
Alstom sustained its level of research and development (gross costs) at 248 million, i.e. 3.4% of sales, in fiscal year 2016/17. Main programmes included the renewal of rolling stock ranges, signalling, and predictive maintenance. For example, Alstom will deliver to Amtrak in the US, a new generation of high speed trains with high-level of innovation for both passenger and operator. Furthermore, in March 2017, Alstom successfully performed the first test run at 80 km/h of the worlds only fuel cell passenger train Coradia iLint. The same month, Alstom and NTL launched Aptis, a new, 100% electric experience of mobility.
4. Operational and environmental excellence
Alstom delivered an adjusted EBIT of 421 million in 2016/17, compared to 366 million the previous year, representing a 15% increase. The adjusted EBIT margin reached 5.8% for the fiscal year 2016/17, versus 5.3% for last fiscal year and 4.8% two years ago. This continuous improvement was driven by volume increase, portfolio mix and on-going initiatives for operational excellence. During the fiscal year 2016/17, net income (Group share) amounted to 289 million.
In terms of environmental excellence, energy consumption is to be reduced by 20% for solutions and by 10% for operations by 2020. With the objective of constantly improving safety at work, the Group targets an occupational injury frequency rate  of 1 by 2020. Alstom has already reduced its energy consumption by 11% for solutions, by 9% for operations and its occupational injury frequency rate1 to 1.4 this year.
5. Diverse and entrepreneurial people
To reflect Alstoms passenger base, the company has the ambition to increase diversity, aiming for 25% of Management or Professional roles to be occupied by women in 2020. The objective is on track with 20% in 2016/17. Alstoms employees around the world all share the same culture, underpinned by strong integrity and ethics values.
Solid balance sheet
During fiscal year 2016/17, the Group free cash flow was positive at 182 million, benefitting from first impacts of the Cash Focus programme, several large down-payments and phasing of transformation capex.
Alstom invested 150 million in capital expenditures in fiscal year 2016/17. The continuous need to reinforce its network as well as local competences should trigger an exceptional 300 million transformation capex over three years. As end of March 2017, these transformation capex stood at 51 million with notably the beginning of the sites construction in South Africa and in India.
The Group had a gross cash in hand of 1,563 million at the end of March 2017 and a fully undrawn credit line of 400 million. After reimbursement at maturity of a 453 million bond in February, Alstom gross debt amounted to 1,519 million as end of March 2017. Alstom net debt remained stable compared to previous year and stood at 208 million on 31 March 2017. Last, equity reached 3,713 million at 31 March 2017, versus 3,328 million at 31 March 2016.
The Board of Directors decided to propose a dividend of 0.25 per share in respect of fiscal year 2016/17 to the Shareholders Meeting that will meet on 4 July 2017.
The ex-dividend date would be 7 July 2017, and the dividend would be payable in cash on 11 July 2017.
Objectives for 2020 confirmed
By 2020 sales should grow organically by 5% per year.
Adjusted EBIT margin should reach around 7% by 2020 driven by volume, portfolio mix and results of operational excellence actions.
By 2020, Alstom expects c. 100% conversion from net income into free cash flow.
 Number of work-related injuries which prevent the injured person from carrying out work for a period of at least one full day per million of hours worked
The management report and the consolidated financial statements, as approved by the Board of Directors, in its meeting held on 3 May 2017, are available on Alstoms website at www.alstom.com.
In accordance with AFEP-MEDEF recommendations, information related to the remuneration of Alstoms Executive Officer is available on Alstoms website: www.alstom.com, under About us/Corporate Governance/Compensation of Executive Officers.
This press release contains forward-looking statements which are based on current plans and forecasts of Alstoms management. Such forward-looking statements are relevant to the current scope of activity and are by their nature subject to a number of important risks and uncertainty factors (such as those described in the documents filed by Alstom with the French AMF) that could cause actual results to differ from the plans, objectives and expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements. These such forward-looking statements speak only as of the date on which they are made, and Alstom undertakes no obligation to update or revise any of them, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
Full version of the Press release (with appendix) below in pdf.
The half-year financial report, as approved by the Board of Directors, in its meeting held on 8 November 2016, can be found on Alstoms website at www.alstom.com. The accounts have been audited and certified.