wallstreet:online AG: Audited consolidated financial statements confirm strong performance 2021 - Smartbroker continues to drive growth

DGAP-News: wallstreet:online AG / Key word(s): Annual Report/Development of Sales
wallstreet:online AG: Audited consolidated financial statements confirm strong performance 2021 - Smartbroker continues to drive growth
17.05.2022 / 09:38
The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.

wallstreet:online: Audited consolidated financial statements confirm strong performance 2021 - Smartbroker continues to drive growth


- Consolidated 2021 pro forma revenues grew by 82% to € 51.4 million

- Number of securities accounts increased to a total of approx. 246,000

- Pro forma EBITDA before customer acquisition costs amounted to € 17.5 million


Berlin, 17 May 2022

wallstreet:online AG (ISIN DE000A2GS609, FSE:WSO1, the "Company"), Germany's largest neo broker operator by assets under custody and by far the largest publisher-independent financial portal operator in German-speaking countries, published its audited financial figures for 2021 on 16 May 2022, confirming the preliminary financials communicated on 7 March 2022. The Company once again succeeded in significantly expanding revenues and customer numbers.

The Berlin-based company recorded a revenue increase of 82% to € 51.4 million, with 63% of the growth coming from the brokerage segment and 37% attributable to the media business. The brokerage revenues accounted for about 30% of consolidated revenues. The adjusted EBITDA before customer acquisition costs amounted to €17.5 million[1]. The profitability achieved enabled targeted investments in new customer acquisition to accelerate the growth of the Company’s neobroker Smartbroker. Consolidated revenues under HGB amounted to €48.2 million, up 71% compared to 2020. The Group’s net loss for the year amounted to €0.5 million (net profit 2020: €3.6 million) - mainly attributable to the increased investment volume in the brokerage business.

Average securities account volume significantly above market average

The award-winning[2] neobroker Smartbroker again played a major role in this strong financial performance. Thanks to the unique combination of a comprehensive product offering and discount pricing, the Company was able to double the number of securities accounts to ~246,000 accounts by the end of 2021, opening ~120,000 new securities accounts in the process. Of these, ~200,000 are with Smartbroker, which was recently named the best online broker of 2022 by Handelsblatt. Group-wide assets under custody doubled to €8.8 billion within one year. With an average volume of around €36k per securities account, Smartbroker ranks well above the market average for neo brokers.

The Company also presented growth for its media business (led by wallstreet-online.de, finanznachrichten.de, ariva.de, boersennews.de). The number of page impressions increased by more than 15% over the year to just under 4 billion, the segment’s revenues rose by more than 30% year-on-year. At the end of 2021, a subsidiary was founded under the name wallstreet:online Publishing GmbH. All of wallstreet:online's editorial products will be bundled in this company. In the future, the existing journalistic offering will be complemented by new, trading-specific content and self-produced audio and video formats. Key positions for the project have already been filled and further vacancies have been opened.

Significant expansion of personnel strengthens internal structures

Industry experts Matthias Hach (CEO) and Roland Nicklaus (CFO) joined the Management Board in March and April 2021 respectively, strengthening internal structures and facilitating the Company’s targeted transformation from a news portal operator to an integrated financial services provider with its own community. wallstreet:online was also able to add numerous new talents to the wider organization. Among others, the Company strengthened the Compliance, Governance, Finance, and IT departments and welcomed more than 40 new employees in 2021.

At the same time, significant progress was made in the internalization process of the brokerage infrastructure. In summer 2021, the Company applied to extend its existing BaFin (Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht) license in order to be able to provide additional services as a custodian securities institution (depotführendes Wertpapierinstitut) in the future. The expansion relates in particular to the financial commission business (section 2 (2) no. 1 WpIG) and the custody business (section 2 (3) no. 1 WpIG). In April 2022, the squeeze-out of wallstreet:online capital AG’s minority shareholders was also successfully completed. As a result, wallstreet:online AG became the sole owner of the Smartbroker operating company, which enables further investments and coordinated management.

25% revenue growth planned for 2022

According to the guidance presented in March, the Management Board anticipates a 25% year-on-year revenue growth to between €62 million and €67 million in 2022, at an operating EBITDA after customer acquisition costs between €10 million to €12 million and before these costs in the range of € 16 million to € 18 million. The Company is fully focused on the launch of "Smartbroker 2.0" in the second half of 2022, which entails a fundamentally renewed user experience, an expanded product range and an optimized business model. wallstreet:online is set to benefit from higher revenues per trade, a degressive cost model and eventually lower customer acquisition cost per new account.

Matthias Hach, CEO of wallstreet:online AG and wallstreet:online capital AG on the goals for 2022: "2022 is a transition year for us. We are working flat out on the launch of Smartbroker 2.0. After the market launch, we will see an increase in new customer numbers, as we will be able to address completely new target groups with our brokerage app and the new crypto offering. Until then, we have decided to deliberately scale back our customer acquisition efforts to some extent. Nevertheless, we have already seen the opening of ~16,000 new securities accounts in the first quarter of the year, which is in line with our forecasts. By the end of the year, we expect to welcome around 55,000 new customers. We are very pleased with the current development and are fully on track to meet our growth targets."

About the wallstreet:online Group:

The wallstreet:online Group operates the Smartbroker - a multiple award-winning online broker, which is the only provider in Germany to combine the extensive product range of traditional brokers with the extremely favourable conditions of neo-brokers. At the same time, the Group operates four high-reach stock market portals (wallstreet-online.de, boersenNews.de, FinanzNachrichten.de and ARIVA.de). With several hundred million monthly page impressions, the Group is the by far largest publisher-independent financial portal operator in German-speaking countries and hosts the largest finance community.

Press contact:
Felix Rentzsch
Head of Communications
Phone: +49 (0)176 4165 0721
Email: f.rentzsch@wallstreet-online.de

Investor Relations contact:
Sabrina Kassmannhuber
Investor Relations Manager
Phone: +49 (0)30 20 456 500
Email: ir@wallstreet-online.de

[1] The pro forma figures are based on the management information system and include wallstreet:online capital AG fully consolidated as of 1 January 2021. The audited consolidated financial statements, based on HGB, include wallstreet:online capital AG fully consolidated as of 1 August 2021.
[2] See, among others, Handelsblatt, 2 May 2022: "These are the best online brokers": https://www.handelsblatt.com/finanzen/banken-versicherungen/banken/ranking-das-sind-die-besten-onlinebroker-2022/28290936.html

17.05.2022 Dissemination of a Corporate News, transmitted by DGAP - a service of EQS Group AG.
The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.

The DGAP Distribution Services include Regulatory Announcements, Financial/Corporate News and Press Releases.
Archive at www.dgap.de

show this