2019, fifth year of record results thanks to strong execution capabilities
2019 was year of great success: once again we closed the year with record financial results which confirm the sustainability of our business, the validity of our strategy and our strong execution capabilities.
We reached all-time high revenues and EBITDA1 which grew respectively 27.1% and 28.8% to 1,732.1 and 301.2 million euros compared to the previous year. Recurring net profit1 reached 132.7 million euros, an increase of 23.9% compared to 2018.
Our outstanding revenues performance was driven by strong organic growth – above the market and accelerating in the second half of the year – and by the extraordinary contribution of acquisitions. The latter was fostered by both the consolidation of GAES – the largest acquisition in our history – as well as the bolt-on acquisitions carried out mainly in France and Germany. Recurring EBITDA exceeded the 300-million-euro threshold, with a margin on revenues of 17.4%, improving compared to 2018 even after the consolidation of GAES, whose initial profitability was below the group average. Finally, also the balance sheet and financial indicators show excellent results with free cash flow reaching the record 150-million-euro mark, supporting a strong improvement in net financial debt and financial leverage.
There is much more beyond the figures. 2019 was, in fact, the first year of the GAES integration and we completed its initial and most complex phase faster and with better results than initially expected. Indeed, GAES’s growth in 2019, both in terms revenues and profitability, was above initial expectations also due to the synergies achieved in the top end of the range previously disclosed.
In 2019 we have also extended the roll-out of our Amplifon Product Experience – which comprises the new Amplifon product line and the Amplifon multichannel ecosystem – from Italy to France, Germany, the Netherlands, the United States and Australia with excellent results.
At the end of 2019 the penetration rate of the Amplifon Product Line in Italy was over 90%2 and we plan to achieve similar results within 12 months from the launch in the countries where the Amplifon Product Line was rolled-out in 2019. Moreover, the penetration rate of the Amplifon App at the end of 2019 was around 15%, representing a huge potential in terms of data: thanks to it we will gain access to information on our customers’ hearing aids usage, which we may use to create an even more personalized experience in order to satisfy and anticipate even more the needs and expectations of our customers.
Furthermore, in February 2020, consistent with our strategy to further strengthen our position in our core markets, in February 2020 we finalized the acquisition of Attune Hearing in Australia, the largest independent hearing healthcare player in Australia.
Lastly, we mention the continuous trust shown by the financial community towards us, which is testified both by our listing on the Stoxx Europe 600 index since June – following the listing on the FTSE MIB since the end of December 2018 – as well as by the successful placement of non-convertible bond notes for 350 million euros with 7-year maturity.
We conclude by reminding that as far as the communication to our stakeholders is concerned and with the aim of providing transparent and thorough information, Amplifon presents also this year its fourth Sustainability Report, in the form of Non-Financial Disclosure in accordance with Italian Legislative Decree No 254/2016, which illustrates the Company’s commitment to socially responsible and sustainable growth.
We thank, therefore, all the management team of the Company and each one of our 17,000 people for their profound commitment, professionalism, and passion. Finally, we also thank our shareholders and the other stakeholders for their support and trust in our Company.
1 Recurring data without the application of IFRS 16 for the sake of effective comparison with 2018 figures.
2 Private and paid-up market.