Metsä Board’s comparable operating result in January–June 2020 was EUR 94 million

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January–June 2020
(compared to 1–6/2019)

  • Sales were EUR 945.2 million (964.2).
  • Comparable operating result was EUR 94.2 million (102.8), or 10.0% (10.7%) of sales. Operating result was EUR 100.3 million (118.3).
  • Comparable earnings per share were EUR 0.19 (0.23), and earnings per share were EUR 0.21 (0.27).
  • Comparable return on capital employed was 10.7% (11.7%).
  • Net cash flow from operations was EUR 152.3 million (67.1).

April–June 2020
(compared to 4–6/2019)

  • Sales were EUR 473.1 million (477.1).
  • Comparable operating result was EUR 60.5 million (41.0), or 12.8% (8.6%) of sales. Operating result was EUR 66.5 million (46.4).
  • Comparable earnings per share were EUR 0.13 (0.09), and earnings per share were EUR 0.15 (0.10).
  • Comparable return on capital employed was 13.9% (9.7%).
  • Net cash flow from operations was EUR 72.3 million (30.7).

Impact of the coronavirus on Metsä Board’s business operations

The coronavirus pandemic has increased demand for hygienic and safe packaging materials, particularly for end uses in the food, beverage and pharmaceutical industries. On the other hand, the pandemic has weakened demand in graphic end uses and packaging for luxury items. Metsä Board’s paperboard order inflows grew rapidly with the outbreak of the pandemic in March–April, but returned to their normal level towards the end of the review period. Metsä Board’s paperboard deliveries in the first half of the year increased year-on-year.

The coronavirus has not had an impact on production at Metsä Board’s mills. To minimise close contacts, the scope of the annual maintenance of mills scheduled for the second quarter of the year was scaled down and shutdowns were partly rescheduled to the second half of the year. 

Metsä Board’s financial position is good. The maturity profile of the loans is healthy, and the company has adequate liquidity. The company’s paperboard portfolio is defensive in crisis situations, and thus the cash flow, which has remained strong, supports financial headroom. The pre-engineering phase of the renewal of the Husum pulp mill and the preparatory construction work related to the investment progressed as planned during the first half of the year. The company has at its disposal substantial precautionary measures aiming to ensure health and safety of the personnel and the continuity of the business operations. Despite the precautionary measures, a prolonged pandemic could lead to disruptions in production and/or the supply chain. Furthermore, the weakening of the world economy attributable to the pandemic is also likely to reduce demand for Metsä Board’s products and thereby have a negative impact on the company’s profitability.

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Source: Metsä Board

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