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Saipem: Recovery on Track After Positive Q3, LNG Project in Mozambique to Restart Next Year

Saipem: Recovery on Track After Positive Q3, LNG Project in Mozambique to Restart Next Year

Italian energy services group Saipem has made significant progress in its turnaround and is close to completing the problematic projects that forced it to raise capital last year, its CEO said on Thursday.

Commenting on third quarter results, Alessandro Puliti said the group was back on a growth path thanks to record orders and a shift towards higher margin projects.

“We are seeing now the results of several steps made in the right direction since our profit warning,” Puliti said.

The group reported late on Wednesday a 26% rise in third-quarter earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) to 230 million euros ($243 million), the highest since the last quarter of 2019.

Saipem this month won a $4.1 billion engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract for a gas project in the United Arab Emirates, bringing its total order backlog to 32 billion euros.

“The group is close to full capacity on the offshore business and we are considering the possibility to rent additional vessels,” Puliti said.

A very large liquefied natural gas project in Mozambique would likely restart next year, the CEO said.

In January 2022 Saipem issued a profit warning, blaming rising supply chain costs and poor project margins in offshore wind and onshore construction.

Now the group is confident it will complete the challenging projects by the end of next year, finance chief Paolo Calcagnini said.

Shares in Saipem were down 4.8% at 1210 GMT, underperforming a drop of 0.75% in Milan blue-chip index.

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Calcagnini said the fall in the stock could be linked to a misunderstanding over an upcoming shareholder meeting.

The group has called a shareholder meeting on Dec. 13 to vote on the potential issuance of new shares to be launched in 2029 when a 500-million euro equity-linked bond matures.

“The shareholders meeting on the equity-linked bond is only a technical thing … there are no plans for a capital increase in the near future,” Calcagnini said.

Reuters

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