Glaston’s orders received grew by 23 percent to $32.4 million (EUR 26.5 million) from last year’s first quarter to the same period this year. Glaston recently published its quarterly financial report for the period between January 1 and March 31, 2018.

The company’s net sales totaled $30.3 million (EUR 24.8 million), down 7 percent compared to the same period in 2017. Its comparable operating profit was $1.2 million (EUR 1 million), similar to last year’s level.

According to the release, the steady order intake of the previous six months and positive market development have created good conditions for profitable growth in 2018. The company expects the full-year comparable operating profit to improve from 2017.

“Glaston made an upbeat start to the year. The first-quarter orders grew by 23 percent to EUR 26.5 million, which is a good level for the generally quiet beginning of the year. There was a lot of activity in the EMEA area and strong development was seen in the Asia region. North America orders fell short of last year’s level,” says Arto Metsänen, president and CEO. “Last year’s sale of the pre-processing business as well as the weakness of the U.S. dollar contributed to the decline in net sales.”

Metsänen says Glaston invested in product development, particularly in the digitalization of the company’s products and services, as well as in emerging glass technologies.

“In the emerging technologies unit, the Heliotrope nanotechnology project advanced according to plan. A prototype line was approved in March and progress made on the testing of an electrolyte material. If the final stages of the project are implemented according to plan, the first pilot line may be ordered this year,” he says. “Smart glass has enormous potential and the smart glass market is expected to grow significantly in the next few years … we are actively involved with our emerging technologies unit in developing new glass technologies and their practical application. In addition to the Heliotrope project, the unit has nearly ten pending projects, related to the automotive, solar energy and aviation industries. Building the emerging technologies unit’s business will play a particularly significant role in Glaston’s growth and increasing shareholder value over the next three to five years.”

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