Rottneros was still in the red in the first quarter of 2013. The company posted a loss of SEK4m, in line with the loss reported in the same period of last year. Unfavourable currency effects are said to have burdened sales.
Against the background of a balanced pulp market, Swedish NBSK and CTMP pulp manufacturer Rottneros has booked a net loss after taxes of SEK4m in the first quarter of 2013 (€473,979). This corresponds to the result posted in the same period of last year. However, the result improved compared to the fourth quarter of 2012 when the company’s loss amounted to SEK10m (€1.18m). The operating loss deepened from SEK3m (€352,531) in the first quarter of 2012 to SEK6m (€705,061) in the corresponding period this year.
Sales decreased by 4.6% year-on-year and stood at SEK354m (€41.60m) but were still higher than in the previous quarter when only SEK329m (€38.66m) were reached. Rottneros said that the pulp price in US dollar terms had not changed significantly since the first quarter of 2012. When figured in Swedish kronor, however, the price had fallen due to negative currency effects, the company pointed out. NBSK, for example, cost only 1% less in US$ year-on-year while converted into SEK, the price fell by 6% to an average of SEK5,295/t (€622.22). The impact on revenue of the currency effects amounted to –SEK11m in the first quarter of the year, the company stated.
Deliveries developed differently depending on the product. Groundwood pulp sold well in the first quarter of 2013 as this market has reportedly been strong. Shipments increased 25% from 12,400 t in the first three months of last year to 15,500 t this year. In contrast, deliveries of sulphate pulp and CTMP dropped by 2.3% and 5.6% year-on-year to 51,600 t and 18,400 t respectively. Overall, Rottneros sold 85,500 t of pulp in the period in review, an increase of 0.9% year-on-year.
The acceptance period for the offer of Arctic Paper to take over shares in Rottneros has been concluded during the first quarter. Arctic Paper now holds 54% of the shares in the Swedish pulp manufacturer. The company emphasised that business was continuing as usual. "There are no imminent dramatic changes pending concerning deliveries to Arctic Paper or other customers,” President and CEO Mr Terland said.
As regards the future market development, Rottneros anticipated that the Swedish currency would continue to be strong, meaning that everyone would have to continue endeavours to cut costs. On the other hand, the price trend is said to be clearly rising. Demand was currently stable and no capacities were expected to be added to the pulp market in the near future, the company said.