Profoto reports fourth quarter sales up nearly 26 percent

Stockholm-based lighting company Profoto reported fourth-quarter sales increased 25.7 percent to SEK 218 millin. Adjusted for currency effects, net sales increased by 24.3 percent. EBIT amounted to SEK 79m (46) and the EBIT margin to 36.1 percent (26.6).

For the year, net sales increased to SEK 732 million, up 38.6 percent. Adjusted for currency effects, net sales increased by 44.1 percent.


∆% 2021
Net sales, SEKm 218 173 25.7 732 528 38.6
EBIT, SEKm 79 46 70.3 212 -12
EBIT margin, % 36.1 26.6 28.9 -2.2
Adjusted EBIT, SEKm 79 48 63.9 237 56 323.2
Adjusted EBIT margin, % 36.1 27.7 32.3 10.6
Profit/loss for the period, SEKm 60 33 82.9 158 -17
Cash flow from operating activities, SEKm 101 73 38.4 240 153 56.9
Net debt, SEKm -134 -91 -134 -91
Net debt/EBITDA -1.44 -1.47 -0.50 -1.20
Earnings per share 1.50 0.82 82.9 3.95 -0.44

“We are proud to present a good fourth quarter. Sales grew by 26 percent compared with the same period last year. We have noted a structural increased need for high-quality images — especially in photography for e-commerce,” says Anders Hedebark, President and CEO of Profoto. “Our customers are often high-profile fashion companies that shoot images of models in studios. The big difference now is that the images don’t just end up on a full-page spread in a fashion magazine, but are also used online. This trend derives from closing of shops in well-established locations during the pandemic which has resulted in them accelerating their e-commerce, which will in turn increase the need for more high-quality images. These images may be used on the company’s own website, on other e-commerce retailers, and/or on social media. Regardless, high-quality images are needed for pure product photography, on models, for marketing in social and traditional media. The images need to be as realistic as possible to increase sales conversions and reduce costly returns for those selling and marketing the products. The quality and details in the images of the products regarding fabrics, materials, etc, are essential. Having the right light and lighting when taking photos is crucial to the quality of the images!

“As we said previously, our sales correlate with how our communities reopen,” he continued. “This quarter, the picture was rather mixed. In APAC, for example, Japan opened first, but then closed again at the end of the quarter, while China was relatively closed throughout the period. In EMEA, many countries opened in early autumn, only to reintroduce restrictions to varying degrees toward the end of the year. Optimism was high in Americas, one of our strongest performing regions. At the same time, this region lost the most sales in 2020, which means it would have the largest recovery.

“Thanks to our strong sales performance, we reviewed the financial target set at the time of our IPO in July 2021, he continued. “We said back then we expected to reach a level of over SEK 800m in sales by the end of 2023. Since we have already reached SEK 732m, and strongly believe in our target of over time, to achieve a constant currency annual organic growth in net sales of above 10 percent, we anticipate reaching a level above SEK 800m earlier than that. The profit we achieved, measured in EBIT or EBIT margin, was very good – stronger than our financial target. I want to clarify that we do not intend to stay at this level in the long term, since we plan to invest more in marketing and product development to maintain our long-term growth.”

Profoto’s financial targets:

  • Profoto aims to, over time, achieve a constant currency annual organic growth in net sales of above 10 percent.
  • Profoto aims to maintain an EBIT margin within 25-30 percent whilst growing EBIT year-over-year.
  • Profoto aims to pay out at least 50 percent of its net profit, while also taking into account other factors such as financial position, cash flow and growth opportunities.