The SII engineering consulting group posted revenue of €254.5m for the first nine months of its 2015-2016 fiscal year, an increase of 9.6 percent in consolidated net sales, including 9.3 percent from organic growth, compared with the same period a year ago. Its business received a welcome boost during the third quarter of the fiscal year from a continued acceleration in billings that started the previous quarter. The 12.9-percent increase in sales, to €91.7m (including organic growth of 11 percent), reflected the marked recovery in investment spending in France and the continued gains of market shares by SII’s international operations.
Business investment returns to a significant level in France, SII’s home market
The SII Group generated revenue of €53.6m in France during the third quarter of fiscal 2015-2016, an increase of 6 percent from the same period the previous year, entirely attributable to organic growth. In the wake of a 1.4-percent increase in net sales the first half of the year, this quarterly improvement is indicative of the Group’s strong position with its major industrial customers and of the favorable impact of resumed capital spending in all of the sectors in which it operates, from aerospace and defense to telecommunications, financial institutions and energy, with the last two providing significant sources of growth and diversification.
Under these circumstances, SII’s business volume remained high, in line with the previous quarter, with the ratio of billable hours (excluding holidays) at 90 percent for the third quarter of fiscal 2015-2016. The Group also adjusted its hiring rate in light of its current high level of activity, with the headcount on December 31, 2015 three percent above its level a year earlier.
Another quarter of double-digit growth in international operations (up 20 percent)
There was no let-down in the SII Group’s international operations, where consolidated sales for the quarter were up 20 percent, and 19.1 percent on a like-for-like basis, from the third quarter of the previous year. The expansion continued to be driven by improved results in Poland (up 35.2 percent), Romania (61.6 percent), Chile (55.7 percent), Belgium (13.8 percent) and Spain (10.8 percent). Growth resumed in the Czech Republic during the quarter (12.7-percent increase). Significant declines continued to be reported in Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands.
Outlook for fiscal 2015-2016
In light of the volume of business generated during the first nine months of its 2015-2016 fiscal year and of the Group’s good recent performance, SII is revising its consolidated revenue guidance for the year as a whole. The Group expects net sales to increase by more than 12 percent and to exceed 355 million euros (with the CADCON Group included in consolidated results from January 1, 2016). The SII Group also confirms its objective to improve its full year’s operating margin and net income from the previous year’s levels.