Net Worth and Financial Position

Cash Flow

Net cash flow from operating activities for the Sartorius Group was €125.4 million relative to €129.7 million a year ago; which include €4.0 million related to the discontinued operation. Besides the growth-induced increase in working capital, termination of the company's factoring program in the reporting year had an impact of around €50 million on operating cash flow.

As planned, investments in 2015 were higher than in the previous year. Net cash outflow from investing activities increased from €82.0 million in 2014 to €110.6 million in 2015.

The sale of the Industrial Technologies Division resulted in a gross cash inflow of around €90 million in the reporting period. In contrast, cash outflows related to acquisitions reflect the purchase of the companies BioOutsource Ltd. and Cellca GmbH. Overall, net cash flow from investing activities and acquisitions | divestitures was - €91.4 million compared with - €86.3 million in the previous year.

Thus, the Sartorius Group financed its investments and acquisitions entirely from operating cash flows, as in the previous year.

Cash Flow Statement (Summary)

€ in millions 2015 2014
Net cash flow from operating activities 125.4 129.7
Of which discontinued operation
1.0 4.0
Net cash flow from investing activities
and acquisitions
–91.4 –86.3
Of which discontinued operation
72.9 –3.6
Net cash flow from financing activities –40.8 –41.9
Of which discontinued operation
0.0 0.0
Cash and cash equivalents 52.8 40.6
Gross debt 396.8 392.1
Net debt 344.0 335.6

Consolidated Statement of Financial Position

The balance sheet total of the Sartorius Group increased €164.2 million to €1,437.2 million as of the reporting date on December 31, 2015.

Non-current assets rose €122.9 million to €959.9 million due to investments and acquisitions made in the reporting year.

Current assets at €477.4 million were €41.3 million higher than in the previous year. The disposal of assets of €75.9 million related to the sale of the Industrial Technologies Division at the beginning of the reporting year offset the increase in working capital mentioned above.

Key Figures for Working Capital

in days201520141)
Rate of turnover for inventories
Inventories | Sales revenuex 3606159
Rate of turnover for receivables
Trade receivables | Sales revenuex 3606270
Rate of turnover for net working capital
Net working capital2) | Sales revenuex 3608792

1) Excluding effect from factoring program

2) Sum of inventories and trade receivables less the trade payables

Equity increased, driven by earnings, from €497.7 million to €644.8 million. The equity ratio for the Sartorius Group rose from 39.1% in 2014 to 44.9% in 2015.

Current and non-current liabilities for the Sartorius Group edged up slightly from €775.4 million a year ago to €792.5 million in the reporting year. The growth-induced increase in working capital particularly contributed to this figure. In conjunction with the Group's discontinued operation, liabilities of around €30.6 million were sold in the year under review.

Gross debt, which is comprised of liabilities to banks, including a note loan (“Schuldscheindarlehen”) and finance leases, stood at €396.8 million, approximately at the prior-year level of €392.1 million. Net debt, defined as gross debt less cash and cash equivalents, rose slightly from €335.6 million a year ago to €344.0 million.

Ratio of Net Debt to Underlying EBITDA

Regarding the Sartorius Group's borrowing potential, the ratio of net debt to underlying EBITDA is a key financial ratio. It improved as of December 31, 2015, to 1.3 against 1.7 a year earlier. These ratios include the discontinued operation of the Sartorius Group.

Financing | Treasury

The Sartorius Group is financed on a long-term, well-diversified basis, which covers both its short-term cash requirements and its long-term strategy.

A major pillar of this financing is the syndicated credit line of €400 million concluded in December 2014 with a maturity term that was extended in the reporting year to six years total.

An additional component of the company's financing is the note loan ("Schuldscheindarlehen") placed in 2012 with a volume of €100 million and maturities of five to ten years. Furthermore, several long-term loans amounting to around €190 million are available to expand our production capacities, among other projects. Beyond these components, we have diverse working capital and guaranteed credit lines totaling approximately €60 million.

The financing instruments mentioned above for the Sartorius Group comprise those with both fixed and variable interest rates. Some of the Group's variable interest-rate bank loans are hedged against an increase in the general interest rate level.

As a consequence of its global business activities, the Sartorius Group is exposed to fluctuations in foreign exchange rates. The main foreign currencies include the U.S. dollar, Japanese yen and British pound. Using its global manufacturing network with production facilities in North America, the U.K., China and India, among other places, Sartorius can compensate for the majority of currency fluctuations by natural hedging.

We generally hedge approximately two-thirds of our remaining net currency exposure over a period of up to 1.5 years through suitable currency transactions.