The degree of uncertainty as to the evolution of the business and the results of the second half remains extremely high.
As far as KOS is concerned, towards the end of the first half there was an inversion of the trend with a recovery in rehabilitation activity, the acute sector and in diagnostics and oncology services; the care-home sector has stabilized but is not yet at the recovery stage. As things are at present, provided there is no second wave of contagion in the autumn, it is expected that the diagnostic areas, oncology treatments, psychiatrics and the acute sector could return to levels of pre-Covid activity during this year. For rehabilitation and the care-homes, the return to normal levels of activity is expected to take place in 2021. Moreover with reference to the care-home sector in Germany, it should be noted that the impact of Covid-19 was limited and the return to normality is expected to be by the end of this year.
In this scenario, it is therefore plausible that the reduction in revenues and results of the business reported in the first half will be less in the second half of the year.
As regards Sogefi, visibility as to the evolution of the market in the coming months remains limited both in terms of the uncertainty as to the evolution of the pandemic and of the difficulty in forecasting the impact of macro-economic circumstances caused by the same on demand in the automotive sector. For the second half of 2020, IHS Markit, a source commonly used by the sector, expects that, without a second outbreak of Covid-19 and resulting measures to restrict production and adverse effects of the latter on the market, world production could be at -10% compared to the second half of 2019, while market analyst forecasts tend to be more cautious, expecting a world market contraction in a range between -15% and -30%, the latter in the event of a second wave of Covid-19.
In this uncertain scenario, Sogefi has incorporated into its expectations for the second half of the year a world market scenario hypothesis of around -20%, against which it expects to achieve an EBIT, excluding restructuring costs, that is slightly positive, a significant reduction in the net loss compared to the first half and a slightly positive free cash flow.
Both companies, in the light of the totally exceptional circumstances that arose in the first half of the year, despite today having financial resources in excess of their current needs and not foreseeing any increase in their debt compared to the levels at the end of June 2020, given the uncertainty as to the evolution of the market and anticipating the natural expiry of their existing loans, have begun negotiations with their financial partners, with whom they have consolidated relationships, to ensure that they have sufficient funding available in the medium term.
In the light of the above, the CIR group expects the second half of the year to still be difficult but provided there is no second wave of Covid-19 it should be much better than the first half.
SOURCE: Semi-annual financial report as of June 30 2020