First half of 2023
11.08.2023 | Press release of Salzgitter AG
SALZGITTER AG with successful first half year 2023
- Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of € 461 million
- Rigorous implementation of the "Salzgitter AG 2030" strategy
- Funding approval of more than € 1 billion received for the first development stage of SALCOS®; first payment remitted
- Contract to build direct reduction plant awarded
- Additional partnering agreements concluded
- Portfolio management under way
- Guidance for the financial year 2023 affirmed
After an encouraging start to the financial year 2023, followed by a gradual deterioration in the economic environment, the Salzgitter Group delivered presentable EBITDA of € 461 million and earnings before taxes of € 243 million. In particular, the Steel Processing and Steel Production business units, along with the Technology Business Unit, contributed to this result. Despite the high volume of investments, first and foremost in implementing the SALCOS® – Salzgitter Low CO2 Steelmaking transformation program, net debt declined compared with the year-earlier figure, accompanied by a higher equity ratio. This documents the continued very robust balance sheet and strong financial position of Salzgitter AG.
External sales declined 12 % to € 5.8 billion (H1 2022: € 6.6 billion), due above all to the downturn in shipment volumes compared with the year-earlier period, coupled with lower average selling prices for many rolled steel products. A presentable result in the form of EBITDA of € 461.0 million (H1 2022: € 1,138.5 million) and earnings before taxes of € 242.6 million (H1 2022: € 970.5 million) was generated. At € 29.3 million, the contribution of Aurubis AG, an investment included at equity (IFRS accounting), dropped notably short of the year-earlier figure (H1 2022: € 84.3 million). The after-tax result came in at € 191.8 million (H1 2022: € 781.0 million), which brings basic earnings per share to € 3.49 (H1 2022: € 14.39). Return on capital employed (ROCE) stood at 8.9 % (H1 2022: 30.7 %). The equity ratio improved to a very sound 44.8 % (H1 2022: 42.2 %). Net debt declined by almost € 280 million year-on-year (€ –624,3 million; H1 2022: € –901.4 million). The Federal Republic of Germany and the Federal State of Lower Saxony have committed to providing funds for the SALCOS® program that will be paid out depending on the investments made. By the reporting date no payments had been received from the funds applied for and eligible for disbursement (€ 60 million; H1 2022: € 0). A major part of these investment subsidies was paid in July 2023, however.
“Despite the deterioration in the economic environment, the Salzgitter Group delivered a gratifying half-year result. With funding approval of around € 1 billion from the Federal Republic of Germany and the Federal State of Lower Saxony for the construction of the first stage of SALCOS®, the commissioning of the direct reduction plant, coupled with additional partnering agreements concerning sales and energy, we have achieved significant milestones in implementing our “Salzgitter AG 2030” corporate strategy. I am also particularly pleased with the very first evaluation of Salzgitter AG by rating agency EcoVadis that was successfully concluded in June. We were right away certified with a bronze medal. This award is our motivation for achieving further improvements. Regarding our portfolio management we have moved forward by transferring Salzgitter Bauelemente GmbH to its new owner and selling the Berg Pipe Group, and we will consistently pursue this course.”
“Given the currently considerable economic challenges in our core market of Germany, maintaining our sales and earnings guidance is not going to happen by itself. As before, it will be also the result of the targeted diversification of our business activities, flanked by the “Performance 2026” profit improvement program that is in integral part of our corporate strategy. Particularly against the backdrop of the present economic situation, we will continue to reduce our working capital in the current year in the mid-triple-digit million euro range. Achieving this will make a significant contribution to financing SALCOS®, as will the funding by the German government and the federal state that made the first payment in July. This process is now to be perpetuated.”
Against the backdrop of an anticipated weaker second half of the year, coupled with a persistently politically and economically volatile environment, we continue to anticipate the following for the Salzgitter Group in the financial year 2023:
- sales of between € 11.5 billion and € 12.0 billion,
- EBITDA of between € 750 million and € 850 million,
- a pre-tax profit of between € 300 million and € 400 million, and
- a return on capital employed (ROCE) notably below the previous year's level.
As in recent years, please note that opportunities and risks from currently unforeseeable trends in selling prices, input material prices and capacity level developments, as well as exchange rate fluctuations, may considerably affect business performance in the course of the financial year 2023. The resulting impact on performance may be within a considerable range, either to the positive or to the negative.
The complete report released on the results of the 1st half of 2023 can be viewed at:
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Phone: +49 (0) 5341 21-2300
Disclaimer: Some of the statements made in this report possess the character of forecasts or may be interpreted as such. These are made to the best of the Company’s knowledge and judgment, and by their nature are subject to the proviso that no unforeseeable deterioration occurs in the economy or in the specific market situation pertaining to the business units’ companies, but rather that the underlying bases of plans and outlooks prove to be accurate as expected with regards to their scope and timing. Notwithstanding prevailing statutory provisions and capital market law in particular, the Company accepts no obligation to continuously update any forward-looking statements that are made solely in connection with circumstances prevailing on the day of their publication.