Hulamin swings back into profit thanks to higher prices and import duties

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Hulamin specialises in rolled aluminium products.
Hulamin specialises in rolled aluminium products.
Supplied/Hulamin

Robust demand for aluminium products saw Hulamin swing strongly back into the black with operating profit leaping 760% to R538 million for the year ended in December 2021, from a loss of R81 million in the previous year.

Hulamin, which specialises in the manufacture of rolled aluminium products, released a strong set of annual results on Monday.

Group sales volume increased by 34% to 222 000 tons, revenue grew by 52% to R13 billion, free cash flow from operating activities improved 166% to R239 million and basic earnings per share increased by 347% to reach R1.92 cents per share. No dividend was declared.

Hulamin CEO Richard Jacob said the company's return to profitability after tough years in 2019 and 2020 was due to increased volumes, higher realised prices and 54% growth in local sales.

Higher domestic sales were attributable to increased canned beverage consumption as well as import duties being imposed on aluminium flat rolled products coming into South Africa. The higher aluminium price in rand also contributed "measurably," he said.

The current year began with solid demand, firmer prices than in recent years, and a reasonable rand/dollar exchange rate. "Should these conditions continue, we expect the healthier trading conditions to persist, albeit without the metal price lag benefits experienced in 2021," Jacob said.

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