Metsä Board’s comparable operating result in January–March 2022 was EUR 121 million

January−March 2022 (compared to 1–3/2021)
• Sales were EUR 582.0 million (493.7).
• Comparable operating result was EUR 121.5 million (88.8), or 20.9% (18.0) of sales. Operating result was EUR 140.7 million (82.0).
• Comparable earnings per share were EUR 0.26 (0.20), and earnings per share were EUR 0.31 (0.18).
• Comparable return on capital employed was 21.1% (18.3).
• Net cash flow from operations was EUR 92.6 million (16.8).

Metsä Board’s CEO Mika Joukio:
“Metsä Board’s profitability remained very good in the first quarter of 2022. Our sales amounted to EUR 582 million, and our comparable operating result to EUR 121 million. The comparable return on capital employed exceeded 21%. No significant annual maintenance shutdowns took place in the first quarter, and production volumes were high – a new quarterly record was achieved in pulp and BCTMP production. Paperboard delivery volumes increased over the previous quarter, and the order backlog remained high.

The euro-denominated average prices of our paperboards have increased by approximately 20% year-on-year. Successful price increases have offset rapid cost inflation, especially in logistics, chemicals and energy. In logistics, costs are rising due to higher fuel prices and problems related to the availability of transport capacity, which we expect to continue in the near future.

The demand for market pulp was at a good level in both Europe and China. Market pulp prices have been rising since the end of last year, as global bottlenecks in logistics and unplanned production shutdowns have reduced market pulp supply.

At the end of the period, our net debt was approximately EUR -100 million, ensuring a solid foundation for our ongoing investments. The new recovery boiler and turbine in Husum will start up in the autumn, increasing our energy self-sufficiency. With an eye on the investment to expand our folding boxboard capacity in Husum, we have gradually begun to increase our inventories.
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