Trackunit’s 2022 revenue nearly doubles despite “uncertain and difficult macro environment”
By Lucy Barnard09 May 2023
Revenue at Denmark-based construction telematics specialist Trackunit nearly doubled to US$140 million (DKK991m) in 2022, despite what the company called “an uncertain and often difficult macro environment.”
Trackunit said that its acquisitions of the industrial IOT division of Canada-based ZTR Control Systems in November 2021 and German ConTech startup Flexcavo in December 2022, as well as organic growth, helped increase net revenue for the year by 74% from US$80.4 million (DK506m) a year earlier.
The company said that the costs of acquiring and consolidating the new businesses, together with high inflation during 2022 and the amortisation of intangible assets, had “materially influenced” the company’s overall performance, leading it to post an overall loss of US$1.9m (DK13.6m) for the year.
CEO Soeren Brogaard told International Construction that the results were in line with expectations.
Trackunit, which has been majority owned by UK-based private equity software investor Hg Capital since March 2021, said that it expected to see its growth trajectory continuing to increase, driven by a global demand for telematics services in the construction industry.
“The way we look at the business is by assessing the quality of earnings,“ Brogaard said. “2022 has been a year of integration. Hg has been instrumental in giving us the muscles to merge with ZTR. It has allowed us to balance our earnings and revenue. We are creating a stable, robust business.”
Trackunit reported that over the year it had increased the number of subscriptions to 1.25 million from 1.08 million a year before, an increase of 15%. It said that 1.25 million visible devices were now connected to its networks and that it was adding 1.7 billion data points each day.
Growing demand for connected construction
“We see that our services are in high demand in the industry,” Brogaard added. “Even in our main markets of Europe and the US, penetration rates for connected vehicles and equipment in the construction off highway market are still just between 25% and 40% while if you move to Asia Pacific or other earlier stage markets it drops very quickly to 15%. Rental companies have always had a high dependency on tracking their equipment, but what we’re seeing now is that contractors and OEMs need to have that data as well.”
The company reported that it had seen costs for providing its service more than double during the year, rising from US$24.7m (DKK168m) in 2021 to US$59.9m (DKK406m) in 2022. External costs too increased from US$7.2m (DKK49m) in 2021 to US$16m (DKK108.9m) in 2022.
“Costs were driven by an increased pressure on raw materials and also inflation which results in pressure on wages and salaries – that’s clearly also a factor,” Brogaard said.
Trackunit said that the cost of a basic subscription stood at US$12 a month, representing around a 5% increase on the previous year.
“When we see our customers paying more for our services it’s because they are buying into new applications and capabilities and buying deeper into our products,” Brogaard said.
He said that much of that new demand was being driven by a requirement for more accurate emissions tracking and Bluetooth connectivity for light equipment. The company is also hoping that new capabilities unveiled at ConExpo allowing customers to remotely map out a construction site, allowing them to more easily control access will also drive sales over the coming year. The company plans to roll out its newest Trackunit 700 model in 2024.
Brogaard said that although the recent supply chain crisis was, in many cases, continuing to prevent customers from acquiring the latest models of telematics-enabled machines, it was encouraging fleet owners to use its services in order to keep current fleets in operation.
Construction’s supply chain crisis
“The supply chain crisis for the past two to three years has extended the life of machines for sure but what our products have been able to do is to help keep the service costs down for those machines,” he said. “The number one issue when your fleet is ageing is that your total cost of ownership goes through the roof but if you have telematics and connectivity through IOT we can help predict that downtime and help get the right parts to those machines at the right time.”
He added that Trackunit had been able to deliver 99% of its own orders as promised throughout the crisis by tailoring its units towards the availability of subcomponents.
Trackunit said that although it had been unable to provide details of its own carbon footprint in 2022, the company promised to publish a full emissions report next year.
“We don’t own any machines so our own footprint will be just people and offices and water coolers and kitchens,” Brogaard said. “But when you take into account scope 3 emissions then there are some dependencies in the broader ecosystem that we are getting ready to report on next year.”
The company said it had implemented its inclusivity, diversity and equality strategy in November 2022, increasing the proportion of women holding management roles in the company to 28% from 16% a year earlier while the number of women holding senior management positions increased from 17% to 20%.