Bad Kötzting, 11. März 2021 - Following the Corona-related closures, Erlebnis Akademie AG will successively reopen its treetop walk sites in Germany and Europe in the first quarter of 2021 and is expected to welcome the first visitors of the year at its locations in Germany on the Easter weekend in early April, provided that the respective implementing regulations allow for a reasonable start-up.
The treetop walk in the Salzkammergut region of Austria is also expected to open at Easter. Bernd Bayerköhler, CEO of Erlebnis Akademie AG: "After what has been a very long winter for everyone, we are delighted that we are now expected to reopen at some locations on the Easter weekend. Our offer takes place in nature and we can maintain a very safe hygiene and distance concept, as we did after the first lockdown last year, due to the size of our facilities. From May 2021 at the latest, we assume that all sites will be in regular operation, and see good prospects here for the visitor volume and will then also receive an additional growth boost with our two completely new sites."
Despite the restrictions imposed by the Corona pandemic, Erlebnis Akademie AG has started construction of two new treetop walks in 2020, which are expected to open in the second quarter of 2021. The Usedom treetop walk will thus be the fifth German site to be inaugurated. The first site in France is being built in Alsace.
"From the very beginning, we focused on site diversification and a corresponding international rollout for treetop walks in the company's strategic orientation," says Bernd Bayerköhler. "As the first company from Europe, we have created treetop walks and adventure forests in Germany as well as in several countries in Europe and are currently growing rapidly. The potential in expanding to countries outside of Europe, such as recently in the implementation of our new project in Canada, is great and we want to take advantage of these growth opportunities."
For the current fiscal year, the company plans to start construction of three more treetop walks, including Quebec, Canada, the first non-European location. Further new sites are planned in Germany and Ireland. At the Alsace treetop walk, eak is already working on ideas for adding a fee-based adventure forest. The implementation of the Erlebnis Akademie's first treetop walk in Poland had to be postponed until next year due to Corona, but is already taken into account in the 2021/22 financial planning. To underpin these growth prospects, the company is carrying out a capital increase with subscription rights for shareholders starting tomorrow. The capital increase is intended to raise the Company's share capital by up to EUR 404,142.00 to up to EUR 2,424,856.00 by issuing up to 404,142 new no-par value bearer shares. The shares will be offered for purchase to existing shareholders of Erlebnis Akademie AG in the period from March 12, 2021 to March 30, 2021 by way of statutory subscription rights at an issue price of 13.00 euros. They are fully entitled to participate in profits from January 1, 2020. Any new shares not subscribed to as a result of the subscription offer may be purchased by shareholders of the Company who are entitled to subscribe in the context of an oversubscription. The allocation in case of oversubscription is at the discretion of Erlebnis Akademie AG. Shares not taken up by shareholders entitled to subscribe will subsequently be offered for subscription to interested investors as part of a private placement.
"In the expansion to the non-European area, we see a special opportunity for our company. In recent years, we have developed into the European market leader in the field of treetop walks and now receive inquiries from all over the world due to our expertise. If we prove our skills in Canada, this will again result in new opportunities," reports Christoph Blaß, CFO of Erlebnis Akademie AG.
In 2020, Erlebnis Akademie was again able to impressively demonstrate how robust its business model is and how pronounced people's desire for nature-based leisure experiences was and is. Despite the longer-term Corona-related site closures, consolidated sales of 15.0 million euros were achieved, which was only around 9.0% below the 2019 figure of 16.5 million euros. The preliminary operating result (EBIT) was EUR 1.8 million, compared to EUR 2.9 million in the previous year (-36.2 %). The main reason for the very satisfactory overall result was the third quarter of 2020, the only quarterly period in the past fiscal year in which all locations were open throughout.
Over the course of the next week, Erlebnis Akademie will make available at https://www.baumwipfelpfade.de/eakag-en/investors/company-presentation a corporate presentation that has been updated compared with the Annual General Meeting.
About Erlebnis Akademie AG
Erlebnis Akademie AG was founded in 2001 in Bad Kötzting, Upper Palatinate, Germany, and is now one of the leading providers of nature-based leisure and adventure activities in Germany. To date, the company has built nine treetop walks, including complementary facilities, with a total investment of around 50 million euros. The German sites are located in the Black Forest, the Bavarian Forest National Park, on the island of Rügen and at the Saarschleife. In addition, two sites were built in the Czech Republic [Lipno nad Vltavou (2012); Krkonose (2017)] and one each in Slovakia [Bachledova/High Tatras (2017)], Austria [Gmunden, Salzkammergut (2018)] and Slovenia [Pohorje (2019)]. In each case, the educational content was implemented in cooperation with renowned partners, such as the German Federal Foundation for the Environment. In 2019, a total of more than 2.2 million visitors visited the treetop walks of the eak group. In addition to the planning of an average of three new treetop walks per year, there are additional concrete potential growth opportunities through the expansion of existing facilities, the expansion of merchandising, catering offers and cooperation marketing - as well as, in perspective, through concept transfer to other nature experience worlds.
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In particular, this document is not an offer to buy securities in the United States of America. Securities may be sold or offered for sale in the United States of America only with prior registration under the provisions of the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or without prior registration only pursuant to an exemption. The shares of Erlebnis Akademie AG have not been and will not be registered under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and will not be offered or sold in the United States of America.
Contact Investor Relations (eak)
Erlebnis Akademie AG
T +49 9941 / 90 84 84-0
Contact Investor Relations (Better Orange)
Better Orange IR & HV AG
Frank Ostermair/Vera Müller
T +49 89 / 889 69 06-22
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After Corona-related closures, Erlebnis Akademie AG is able to partially reopen at the Easter weekend and will launch a cash capital increase with subscription rights tomorrow in order to underpin the company's growth course