The Aurubis Group (Aurubis) generated very good operating earnings before taxes (EBT) of € 261 million in the first nine months of fiscal year 2014/15 (previous year: € 75 million). Operating return on capital employed (ROCE) reached an excellent 18.7 % (previous year: 4.2 %).
Higher treatment and refining charges for the input materials copper concentrate and copper scrap, much higher sulfuric acid prices worldwide, a higher cathode premium and the strong US dollar contributed to the very good results in particular. Furthermore, we operated our facilities with high productivity, a very good metal yield and a favorable mix of input materials. The operating result includes a reversal of the extraordinary effect of € 18 million from the second quarter that weighed on earnings.
The markets for our copper products varied once again: while European demand for copper rod and shapes was consistently good, demand for flat rolled products was restrained in Europe and the US.
“The third quarter was a continuation of the very good second quarter. Not only the good market environment contributed to this but also the high ongoing productivity of our facilities,” summarized Dr. Bernd Drouven, Chairman of the Aurubis AG Executive Board.
At € 8,467 million in the first nine months of fiscal year 2014/15, the Aurubis Group’s revenues exceeded the previous year (€ 8,297 million) due to higher metal prices in euros.
The IFRS consolidated earnings before taxes (EBT) were € 245 million (previous year: € 21 million). In contrast to operating earnings, IFRS earnings include measurement effects due to copper price fluctuations and other factors. Therefore, the operating earnings are decisive for Aurubis in assessing the business performance and managing the company.
We continue to expect a good supply of copper concentrates and considerably improved treatment and refining charges compared to the previous year, due first and foremost to our focus on complex concentrates that are not subject to the benchmark conditions. Moreover, we anticipate a very high metal yield from the input materials currently being processed. We also expect the copper scrap market to be stable in the fourth quarter with good refining charges.
Demand for rod and shapes generally slows down in the fourth quarter. Because of the weak euro and European industry’s correspondingly strong exports, this slowdown is nevertheless not expected to be as distinct as the previous year. We assess the further business performance in late summer optimistically with a view to our customers’ order books. Only our expectations for the European and North American markets for flat rolled products are restrained.
We continue to view the sulfuric acid markets positively on the whole. Due to the availability in South America, prices could decline slightly in overseas business for the fourth quarter, especially in spot business.
Overall, we expect the concentrate throughput and the cathode output to exceed the prior-year level during the fiscal year.
Moreover, we anticipate initial contributions from our projects to improve results in the current fiscal year.
“In addition to a stable market environment, we expect first and foremost a high operating performance in all divisions. As long as there are no extraordinary events, the operating results for fiscal year 2014/15 should be very good – possibly the best results in the company’s history,” Dr. Bernd Drouven concluded.
You can find the complete report on the first half of fiscal year 2014/15 and the Press Release in the Download Links on the right side.