Hagemeyer, Naarden, the Netherlands, said its Professional Products and Services (PPS) division achieved critical mass in North America in 2001 with the inclusion of CamBar. As a result, the structure of the North American group changed fundamentally and the businesses are in the process of being integrated. Hagemeyer organizes its PPS division on a geographical basis with three regions: Europe, North America and Asia-Pacific. North America net sales for the six months ended Jun. 30 were EUR 883.1 million, an increase of EUR 544.0 million or 160% as compared to the prior year. Because of integration, comparison with the prior year is not meaningful.
Of the total increase, EUR 513.3 million is attributable to the acquisition of CamBar in the second half of 2000. The movement in the exchange rate of the U.S. dollar resulted in an increase of EUR 21.9 million. On a pro forma basis, including CamBar in the comparative period, organic growth was 2%. This reflects organic growth of 3.7% by CamBar, primarily as a result of growth in integrated supply services whereas the combined organic growth for Vallen and Tristate was a negative 1%, reflecting the downturn in the U.S. economy, the company said.
Gross profit of the combined North American businesses for the period was EUR 208.0 million or 23.6% as a percentage of sales.
EBITA for the first half of 2001 was EUR 32.8 million or 3.7% as a percentage of sales. Deteriorating economic conditions and the general decline in manufacturing in the U.S. has put pressure on EBITA margins, Hagemeyer said. As a result, a series of actions have been initiated that will lead to a reduction in the cost base. In addition, a program to integrate the three individual operations has been launched to gain further operating efficiencies over a period of time as well as enhance the U.S. service capabilities.