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Electronics Production | December 10, 2009

Sales grow for Farnell

Electronic components distributor Farnell, third quarter sales saw further improvement with the rate of year on year sales decline abating in all MDD regions.
APAC returned to year on year sales growth and sales in MDD Americas and Europe grew sequentially on the second quarter. MDD Americas absolute sales per day have improved for five consecutive months.

Another quarter of gross margin stability, up incrementally at 39.7%, achieved despite the challenging economic environment and highlighting the value that our customers’ attribute to our proposition in which we have invested and will continue to invest in.

Our improving sales, gross margin stability and the benefit of cost actions taken delivered a 9.2% return on sales, a one percentage point increase on the second quarter. Our cash performance remains strong with third quarter operating cash flow conversion of 158%, excluding restructuring costs, reflecting effective working capital management despite inventory investment of £3.4 million. Net financial liabilities reduced by £31 million year to date, including an £18 million benefit from exchange rates.

We have again outperformed our markets and taken market share in APAC, Europe and the UK, clearly demonstrating the success of our strategic focus. EDE sales through the quarter significantly outpaced the improvement in MRO sales in all regions, particularly in North America.

Sales via eCommerce channels in Europe and APAC now account for 57.1% and 44.4% of total sales, respectively, as the web continues to be our customers’ channel of choice. In North America web sales grew 20.1% on the second quarter and eCommerce sales now represent 25.4% of total sales.

Year on year sales in India grew 94.6% and in Eastern Europe 49.8%. In Greater China sales grew 22.4% year on year as we received recognition from the electronics industry as the engineer’s high service distributor of choice in China.

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