Most significant short-term business risks
The general economic development, functioning of the financial markets and the political environment in YIT’s operating countries have a significant impact on the company’s business. Negative development in consumers’ purchasing power, consumer or business confidence, the availability of financing for consumer or business, or interest rates would likely weaken the demand for YIT’s products and services. A drop in residential prices or an increase in investors’ yield requirements would pose a risk for the profitability of the company, should these factors materialise.
There is still significant uncertainty related to the economic development of Russia, although the situation seems to have stabilised. The volatility of the oil price and the ruble, geopolitical tensions and inflation may have an influence on the demand for apartments due to a weakening in purchasing power and consumer confidence. Declining purchasing power also impacts the development of residential prices.
THE GROUP’S SHORT-TERM RISKS
In 2016, Finland accounted for 75% of the company’s revenue, which highlights the significance of Finland’s economic development for YIT’s business. The slowing recovery of the Finnish economy and the indebtedness of the public sector may weaken consumers’ purchasing power and general confidence, which would have a negative impact on the demand for apartments and business premises. A persistent increase of public sector debt could also make it more difficult to finance infrastructure investments. Investors have played a central role in YIT’s Finnish business in recent years. An increase in price levels, rental accommodation and / or weakening in tenant demand on the business premises or residential market and better yield of alternative investments could lead to a significant decrease in investor demand.
Ensuring competitive products and services corresponding to customer demand is critical for YIT’s business. Changes in customer preferences and in the offerings of competitors present risks related to the demand for the company’s products and services. New competitors, business models and products on the housing market may present risks related to the demand for the company’s products and services.
Especially in Finland and the CEE countries, the availability of the resources needed for growing the production volume might prevent increasing the production as planned. Competitors’ need for resources also presents a risk of losing key personnel and expertise.
The preparation of the planned merger takes time from the key personnel, causes uncertainty among employees and activates competitors to recruitment attempts. The company has taken planned measures to mitigate these risks. More detailed information on the risks related to the merger is published in the merger prospectus. The merger prospectus is available on the merger web page.
Most of the company’s business is project business, meaning that successful project management plays an integral role in ensuring the company’s profit. The most significant project management risks are related to factors such as pricing, planning, scheduling, procurement, cost management and, in the company’s self-developed business, also the management of sales risk. YIT’s major business premises and infrastructure projects in Finland, such as the Tripla project and the E18 Hamina-Vaalimaa motorway, make up a significant share of the company’s expected revenue in coming years, meaning that successful project management in the projects is integral.
Changes in legislation and authorities’ permit processes may slow down the progress of projects or prevent them from being realised. There are uncertainty factors related to authorities’ actions, permit processes and their efficiency particularly in Russia and the CEE countries.
The improvement of the capital turnover will continue as a part of normal business. The company’s target is to decrease the capital employed in Russia by RUB 6 billion by the end of 2018. Measures to release capital in a challenging market situation involve the risk of financial losses.
The most significant financial risks are the risks related to foreign exchange rate development and the availability of financing. The Group’s most significant currency risk is related to ruble-denominated investments. Further information can be found in the Capital structure and liquidity position section in the Interim Report January-September. More information on financial risks and their management is provided in Note 28 to the financial statements.
More information on the company’s risks and risk management is provided in the Annual Report 2016.
Notice to Lemminkäinen Shareholders in the United States
The YIT shares to be issued in connection with the merger have not been registered under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “Securities Act”) and are being issued in reliance on the exemption from registration set forth in Rule 802 under the Securities Act.
YIT and Lemminkäinen are Finnish companies and the issuance of YIT shares will be subject to procedural and disclosure requirements in Finland that may be different from those of the United States. Any financial statements or other financial information included on this website may have been prepared in accordance with non-U.S. accounting standards that may not be comparable to the financial statements of U.S. companies or companies whose financial statements are prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the United States.
It may be difficult for U.S. shareholders of Lemminkäinen to enforce their rights and any claims they may have arising under U.S. federal securities laws in connection with the merger, since YIT and Lemminkäinen are located in non-U.S. jurisdictions, and some or all of YIT’s and Lemminkäinen’s officers and directors may be residents of countries other than the United States. As a result, U.S. shareholders of Lemminkäinen may not be able to sue YIT or Lemminkäinen or their respective officers and directors in a court in Finland for violations of U.S. federal securities laws. Further, it may be difficult to compel YIT or Lemminkäinen to subject themselves to the jurisdiction or judgment of a U.S. court.
Lemminkäinen’s shareholders should be aware that YIT may purchase Lemminkäinen’s shares otherwise than under the merger, such as in open market or privately negotiated purchases, at any time during the pendency of the proposed merger.