• Consolidated sales up 13.1% to EUR 126.5 million
• Growth in SaaS revenue of 31.5% to EUR 14.2 million
• EBITDA improves by 17% to EUR 16.8 million
• Consolidated earnings climb 23.2% to EUR 6.8 million
• Proposed dividend increase of 10% to EUR 0.55
• Orders on hand up 25.9% to EUR 83.0 million
• Planning confirms dynamic growth
• Early extension of Management Board contracts for a further five years
According to the final figures published today, USU Software AG (ISIN DE000A0BVU28) and its subsidiaries (hereinafter referred to as USU or the USU Group) exceeded the guidance for 2022, thus increasing their consolidated sales by 13.1% year-on-year to a new record of EUR 126.5 million (2021: EUR 111.9 million). This upturn was driven primarily by software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions, which enjoyed substantial growth of 31.5% to EUR 14.2 million (2021: EUR 10.8 million). License revenue also recorded above-average growth of 19.0% to EUR 14.2 million thanks to strong product business (2021: EUR 12.0 million). This was because several customers opted to purchase one-time licenses (on-premise) during the year irrespective of the general trend toward rental software (SaaS). This meant that EBITDA increased by 17.0% year-on-year to EUR 16.8 million (2021: EUR 14.4 million) – another new record and higher than forecasted.
Accordingly, USU expanded its EBITDA margin to 13.3% (2021: 12.9%), thus making further targeted progress toward its medium-term goal. At the same time, EBIT climbed by 22.1% year-on-year to EUR 11.8 million (2021: EUR 9.7 million). USU’s consolidated earnings also improved by 12.2% to a new all-time high of EUR 7.6 million in fiscal 2022 (2021: EUR 6.8 million). This corresponds to diluted earnings per share of EUR 0.72 (2021: EUR 0.64), while basic earnings per share amounted to EUR 0.76 (2021: EUR 0.64). In light of the substantial increase in earnings, the Management Board and Supervisory Board propose increasing the dividend by 10% to EUR 0.55 (2021: EUR 0.50).
Following the strong sales growth and the significant improvement in margins in fiscal 2022 and taking account of the accelerated shift from one-time licenses to SaaS business, the Management Board expects sales to increase to EUR 134-139 million in 2023. This will be accompanied by a sharp rise in the share of SaaS contracts concluded with new customers, strong growth in SaaS sales of over 25% and a trend towards declining license revenues. Accordingly, EBITDA is expected to amount to EUR 16.5-18 million. Another positive indicator supporting this forecast is the year-on-year increase in orders on hand of 25.9% to a new record of EUR 83.0 million (December 31, 2021: EUR 65.9 million). In the medium term, the Management Board expects to see average organic sales growth of around 10% per year, with the share of SaaS contracts among new customers rising to over 75%. The growth in the proportion of sales attributable to high-margin SaaS business is leading to a continuous improvement in EBITDA margins, which are set to increase to 17-19% by the end of 2026.
In light of the company’s consistently positive business performance, the Supervisory Board has resolved the early extension of the Management Board contracts with CEO Bernhard Oberschmidt and Management Board member Dr. Benjamin Strehl for a further five years until the end of 2028. “The Management Board team of Bernhard Oberschmidt and Dr. Benjamin Strehl have helped USU to build up an extremely good reputation among customers in recent years. Their work for USU is reflected in the fact that the company has more than 1,200 customers worldwide. Both Management Board members are highly respected by our employees as well as our customers and the finance community. As Chairman of the Supervisory Board, founder, and majority shareholder of USU Software AG, I greatly appreciate the loyal, trust-based cooperation with the Management Board team and the benefit this brings to the company,” commented Udo Strehl. “The USU Group is in the process of transforming into ‘One USU’. The CEO, Bernhard Oberschmidt, and his Management Board colleague Dr. Benjamin Strehl initiated this process and are driving it forward with great commitment. The contract extension will enable them to continue to play a crucial role in shaping USU’s transformation and growth process,” Strehl added.