First nine months of 2021
12.11.2021 | Press release of Salzgitter AG
Salzgitter Group sustains strong earnings trend; implementation of SALCOS® low CO2 steel production stepped up
- Pre-tax profit of € 604.5 million
- Trading Business Unit delivers best quarterly and 9-month result in its history
- Time plan for decarbonization accelerated: first hydrogen-based steel production end of 2025 – as from 2026, annual production of more than one million tons of low CO2 steel planned
The Salzgitter Group delivered a pre-tax profit of € 604.5 million in the first nine months of the financial year 2021. This result was driven by the dynamic uptrend in selling prices through to August that first and foremost impacted the results of the Strip Steel and Trading business units. The Trading Business Unit achieved the highest quarterly and nine-month result in its history. The participating investment in Aurubis AG again delivered a very gratifying earnings contribution.
The increase in Salzgitter Group’s external sales to € 7,001.7 million was due above all to the upturn in prices for rolled steel and notably exceeded the year-earlier figure (9M 2020: € 5,264.3 million). The pre-tax profit of € 604.5 million (9M 2020: € –224.4 million) includes a contribution of € 133.5 million from the participating investment in Aurubis AG accounted for pursuant to the equity method (IFRS accounting) (9M 2020: € 53.4 million). Earnings after taxes came in at € 467.7 million (9M 2020: € –243.0 million). Earnings per share therefore stood at € 8.56 (9M 2020: € –4.54) and return on capital employed at 20.0 % (9M 2020: –8.1 %). The equity ratio remained at a very sound 34.5 %. Due to the reporting-date related increase in working capital, the net financial position of € –615 million fell considerably short of the level posted on the balance sheet date at year-end 2020 (€ –432 million).
Supply chain disruptions and their repercussions have also been impacting some of our Group companies since the end of the summer quarter. We nevertheless reaffirm our guidance and continue to anticipate the following for the Salzgitter Group in the financial year 2021:
- an increase in sales to more than € 9 billion,
- a pre-tax profit of between € 600 million and € 700 million and
- a return on capital employed (ROCE) that is tangibly above the previous year's figure.
“The excellent result of the first nine months of the financial year 2021 underscores the kind of performance the Salzgitter Group is able to deliver. As delighted and as proud as we are, we should not forget that business can be expected to return to normal levels in the months ahead due to supply chain disruptions and the customary year-end seasonality. Rigorously driving the Group’s ongoing development is imperative for this reason as well. The new corporate strategy is on the verge of being finalized; we will be presenting it in the first quarter of 2022, as planned. During my many visits to the companies of our business units I was particularly fascinated to see how much motivation and enthusiasm there is for embracing the new in our Group. The task is now to channel this motivation and enthusiasm in a targeted way for the good of all stakeholders. SALCOS® – SAlzgitter Low CO2 Steelmaking – is a good example. This is our concept for low CO2 steel production where we have set ourselves even more ambitious goals and are bringing about its implementation. The SALCOS® Office, a project office reporting directly to me that combines our entire technical and commercial expertise for transforming crude steel production, was set up a couple of weeks ago. We are currently preparing the final investment decision for the first expansion stage of SALCOS®. Assuming a positive vote from the Supervisory Board in the summer of next year, we may be able to commence hydrogenbased steel production as early as the end of 2025 and, by 2026, already be producing over one million tons of steel based on this concept.”
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 division 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.