19 April 2023
Riber reports full-year net profit, despite electronic component sourcing constraints
For full-year 2022, Riber S.A. of Bezons, France – which manufactures molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) systems as well as evaporation sources – has reported revenue of €27.8m, down 11% on 2021’s €31.2m.
However, Riber stopped marketing a range of evaporators for the organic light-emitting diode (OLED) market. In addition, despite the firm’s efforts to diversify its sourcing capacity, supply chain disruption affecting electronic components resulted in the deferral of the delivery of two research systems to 2023, totaling €2.9m.
MBE systems sales hence contracted by 15% from €17.4m to €14.8m, for six machines delivered, compared with eight in 2021.
Services & Accessories revenue fell by 6% from a high of €13.8m to €13m, representing 46.8% of revenue.
Gross margin was 35.2%, stable versus 2021’s 35.4%. Operating expenditure is stable, at €9.8m. R&D investments totaled €3.2m (12% of revenue), stable compared with 2021. Sales & marketing costs are up by 18% (in line with the strong growth in order intake), while administrative costs are stable overall.
Compared with a €1.3m operating profit in 2021, operating income broke even in 2022, impacted by non-current charges of €1.3m, in particular due to the decision to discontinue the OLED evaporator product line, which led to the depreciation of inventories.
Net income has fallen from €1.5m in 2021 to €0.2m in 2022. This included €0.4m of financial income and expenses, linked primarily to the revaluation in euros of receivables denominated in US dollars and Yuan.
Reflecting the good level of cash flow from operations and the improvement in working capital requirements, the cash position at the end of 2022 was positive at €6.1m, up €0.2m from the end of 2021. Net financial debt has been reduced from €2.4m to €1.3m.
During 2022, shareholders’ equity fell by €1m to €18.8m, linked to earnings for the year and the distribution of amounts drawn against the issue premium for 2021 to shareholders.
Distribution of amounts drawn against ‘issue premium’ account
At the general meeting on 20 June, Riber’s Executive Board will submit a proposal to shareholders to approve a cash payout based on reimbursing part of the issue premium for €0.05 per share (to be released for payment on 5 July).
During 2022, new order intake improved significantly, including 14 systems (plus an option for an additional four systems) and a good level of orders recorded for services and accessories.
The order book has hence more than doubled from €14.8m to €29.9m, including €24.6m for 11 MBE systems and €5.3m for Services & Accessories.
This does not include the additional order for a production system announced on 20 February, or the option to buy announced on 8 June 2022 covering four production systems for which the firm orders will be confirmed in 2023 when the export license is obtained.
Outlook for 2023
Riber says that, in view of the above, it is confident that it can achieve 40% year-on-year revenue growth to about €40m in full-year 2023, and a significant improvement in profitability.
In a still buoyant market, with robust demand for its systems, Riber expects to continue taking orders in 2023, capitalizing on a strong pipeline of prospects.
At a meeting chaired by Ms Annie Geoffroy, Riber’s Supervisory Board appointed Christian Dupont as chairman of the Executive Board from 13 April, replacing Michel Picault, who is still a member of the Executive Board. Riber reckons that the appointment will make it possible to ramp up its robust growth and expansion in a buoyant market environment.
After graduating as an engineer from EPFL (École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne), Christian Dupont began his career in 1988 with Texas Instruments, where in 1992 he helped create its Wireless business unit, which became the wireless semiconductor market leader for 15 years. He was a marketing nanager before being appointed to head up the business unit wireless USA in Dallas and Nice, where he was in charge of the wireless business unit in Europe. From 2007 to 2010, he was CEO of the electro-optics startup Varioptic, which was sold to Parrot, before serving until 2015 as CEO of MEMS auto-focus firm PoLight in Norway, which listed on Oslo’s stock market. From 2015 to 2021, he was chairman & CEO of CEO-CF, a collaboration platform for executives from high-growth European technology companies. In 2018, as CEO, he helped restructure and refinance semiconductor firm Dolphin Integration, which was taken over by Soitec and MBDA. From 2019, he was CEO of digital health firm Digitsole.