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IEG: Group ends the 3rd quarter with a profit of 7.3m. euros

Total revenues for the first nine months at 42.5 million euros (-37.7% compared to the same period of the previous year, when the major exhibitions in January and February were held). Revenues for Q3 2021 at 35.5 million euros which, even net of contributions received (10.3 million euros), show a solidly positive performance compared to the same period of 2020 and beyond expectations.


RIMINI – The Board of Directors of Italian Exhibition Group S.p.A. (IEG), a companylisted since June 2019 on the Milan Stock Exchange, approved the interim report on operations as at September 30, 2021.

Main Group results for the third quarter of 2021
With the end of the bans imposed by the Government on the Group's core business (15 June for exhibition activities and 1 July for congresses and events), all the events that normally populate the calendar in the summer and autumn months took place, and some events from the first half of the year, such as Enada, Rimini Wellness, TGold (held at the same time as Vicenza Oro September) and the hosted events Expodental and Macfrut, were repositioned. A total of 8 events were held in IEG's quarters and 25 congresses and 3 events by third-party organisers were hosted. On the international side, exhibition activity resumed in the United States, although severely limited by the restrictions on international mobility that only came to an end on 8 November.

The market proved to be highly responsive to the reopenings, demonstrating once again the importance and centrality of the trade fair as an instrument in companies' promotion and marketing strategies. Demand for congresses also resumed with strength, proving the value of live events.

The IEG Group's total revenues in the third quarter 2021 amounted to Euro 35.5 million (of which 10.4 million euros related to contributions collected to compensate the losses incurred for the Covid-19 pandemic), an increase of 29.1 million euros compared to the same period in 2020.

EBITDA for the third quarter was 11.6 million euros, up EUR 18.1 million from the loss of 6.6 million euros in the same period last year. Even excluding the effect of non-recurring items, EBITDA remains positive by 1.3 million euros thanks to the good market response to the events traditionally scheduled in the quarter or exceptionally repositioned in this period and to the effect on costs that the containment policies adopted have produced.

The Group's Operating Profit (EBIT), following the effects of the events described above, amounted to Euro 7.9 million, an increase of Euro 18.5 million compared to the same period last year.

The net result for the quarter for the Group, amounting to 7.2 million euros, showed an improvement of 15.7 million euros compared to the same period last year, which also benefited from deferred tax assets on fiscal losses of 2.9 million euros. Profit for the Period attributable to the shareholders of the Parent Company amounted to 7.6 million euros compared to a loss of 8.2 million euros in the third quarter of the previous year. The third quarter of 2021 brought in financial resources of 15.3 million euros deriving from current operations for 17.0 million euros (of which 9.8 million euros related to government grants), from the use of cash for investing activities for 0.7 million euros and other outflows of 0.9 million euros mainly related to financial expenses.

Results by business division for Q3 2021
Revenues from organised events in the third quarter of 2021 amounted to 11.1 million euros, an increase of 9.3 million euros compared to the results achieved in the same period of the previous year. The quarter witnessed the reopening of VicenzaOro September, which was joined, for the first time, by T.Gold September. The results achieved were positive beyond expectations, providing clear feedback from the sector on the strategic importance of the event. The presence of trade visitors was also very satisfactory, with overall arrivals not too far from those recorded at the last edition held (2019), especially as regards foreign visitors. It should be remembered that in 2020, given the greater uncertainty, the Company organised VOICE, an event with a simpler format and more digital characterisation than the classic jewellery event format. 

Rimini Wellness and Enada were held at the Rimini Exhibition Centre, both rescheduled with respect to their natural spring calendar, to which they will return from 2022. Also in September, at the same time as Macfrut, the first Rimini edition of Fieravicola, organised by the controlled company Fieravicola S.r.l., was held with excellent results.

The hosted events, Expodental and Macfrut, which are usually held in May, brought in 1.2 million euros, while the same period last year had no events hosted.

MICE Events includes the results arising from the concession of spaces and halls for congresses and events, mainly at the Rimini Convention Centre, the Rimini Exhibition Centre and the Vicenza Convention Centre (VICC). In the third quarter of 2021, these "locations" developed 3.0 million euros in revenue, an improvement of 1.9 million euros compared to the same period of the previous year and an increase of approximately 0.9 million euros compared to the third quarter of 2019.

The Related Services business posted revenues of 8.5 million euros, a sharp increase (+6.1 million euros) compared to the same period last year and not too far from the 10 million euros in the third quarter of 2019.

Key Group results for the first nine months of 2021
The Group's total revenues for the first nine months of 2021, which include non-recurring revenues of 10.6 million euro mainly related to contributions to partially cover losses related to the pandemic, amounted to 42.5 million euro, down 37.7% compared to 68.2 million in the same period of 2020, a year in which the shut-down of activity had occurred after the conclusion of IEG's main events taking place in the first few months of the year.

EBITDA for the first nine months amounted to -2.5 million euros, down by 11.6 million compared to the same period of the previous year. EBIT at 30 September 2021 showed a loss of 16.6 million euros compared to a loss of 7.1 million euros in the same period of 2020.

Earnings before tax showed a loss of 18.6 million euros compared to a loss of 621 thousand euros in 2020. The contribution of non-recurring items is similar in the two periods under analysis and amounts to 6.9 million euros and 6.3 million euros, respectively, but those in 2020 are mainly non-cash.

Only for prudential purposes, the Group's Result for the Period does not include any estimate of "deferred tax assets" on fiscal losses for the period, and therefore shows a loss of 19.0 million euros – compared to a profit of 0.8 million euros at 30 September 2020 – positively influenced by 1.4 million euros of deferred tax assets. The Result for the Period attributable to the shareholders of the Parent Company showed a loss of 17.5 million euros compared to a profit of 1.6 million euros in the first nine months of 2020.

The Net Financial Position at 30 September 2021 amounted to 132.8 million euros, showing an increase in net debt of 3.7 million euros compared to 31 December 2020. The "monetary" NFP – which therefore does not take into account the debt of EUR 22.4 million resulting from the application of IFRS 16, any financial payables for future put options of 3.5 million euros and the mtm of derivative financial instruments of 5.8 million euros – amounted to 100.0 million euros, resulting in an increase in debt of 6.7 million euros compared to the end of 2020. At the same time, the non-cash components of the NFP, which amounted to 32.8 million euros at 30 September 2021, decreased by 3 million euros compared to 31/12/2020.

With regard to the measures to ensure financial stability, the actions implemented in relation to the management of working capital and the maximisation of available funds continue. Italian Exhibition Group  S.P.A. obtained 10 million euros (of which approximately 525 thousand euros is non-repayable) new financing from SIMEST; the subsidiaries Pro.stand and Summertrade obtained new financing of 4.5 million euros.

Thanks to the initiatives carried out so far, as of today the Group has a stock of liquidity and credit lines granted and not used for a total amount of no less than 53 million euros.

Consolidated shareholders' equity at 30 September 2021 amounted to approximately 74.4 million euros, down from 93.0 million euros at 31 December 2020 due to the loss for the period. Events subsequent to the end of the third quarter of the year and business outlook The month of October further confirmed the signs of confidence shown by operators in the trade fair sector.

The organised events TTG – Travel Experience (held at the same time as Sia – Hospitality Design, Sun – Beach&Outdoor Style and Superfaces, at its first edition) and Ecomondo, held at the same time as Key Energy, achieved very positive results from all points of view, such as to exceed expectations for 2020 and, in the case of Ecomondo, to reach results very close to pre-pandemic levels. Dubai Active Industry, Dubai Active and Dubai Muscle Show, the largest fitness event in the Middle East, organised by subsidiary HBG Events at the Dubai World Trade Centre from 28 to 30 October, ended with excellent results in terms of both exhibitor and visitor attendance, a success also confirmed by the number of contracts for the 2022 edition already signed through the re-booking campaign conducted at the show.

The MICE business showed positive signs, with venue occupancy rates not too far from pre-pandemic levels.

The Related Services sector achieved very encouraging results at the start of the fourth quarter, reflecting the desire of operators to restart, who are investing with conviction in events and the high level of visitor participation.

On 5 November the Ministry of Tourism communicated the "Theoretical" amounts (still subject to verification) of contributions due for the year 2020 only. On the basis of this communication, Italian Exhibition Group S.p.A. will receive 4,765,576.79 euros; Prostand Srl will receive 2,936,985.64 euros. We are still waiting to know the level of contributions that will be recognised to cover the 2021 losses. The company will ensure that the mechanisms and procedures adopted for the recognition of the shares of contributions due to the various applicants do not contain elements that distort the competitive framework.

The Group is continuing its scouting and development activities aimed at making possible M&A in the exhibition sector, both on the domestic market and abroad.

Although the Italian pandemic scenario is currently better than the international context, uncertainties and difficulties remain, with strong restrictions on international travel and an upward curve of contagions. The Company looks to the future with confidence and will continue to operate with determination, convinced of the strategic importance of the exhibition sector – and of its own role – as an instrument of industrial policy and internationalisation at the service of Italian companies. The good level of bookings by clients for spaces at events in the first quarter of 2022 is the most eloquent sign of the confidence that the market places in our sector.

Corporate events calendar for 2022
The Board of Directors has approved the calendar of corporate events for 2022, available on the Company's website, in the Investor Relations section. The next dates will be March 24th, 2022 for approval of the draft 2021 financial statements, May 10th for the interim report on operations as at March 31, 2022, August 29th for approval of the 2022 half-year report and November 14th for approval of the results of the first nine months of 2022. The shareholders' meeting is set for April 29th, 2022.

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