In 2017 the group's operating loss increased by R128 million over the prior year, driven primarily by the strengthening of the rand and higher raw material prices. Cost increases were partly offset by a 15% increase in average net realised sales prices and a 4% increase in sales volumes.

Encouragingly, in the fourth quarter the company recorded a substantial EBITDA profit with the long steel products (LSP) division reducing its losses of the first three quarters.

The domestic and export markets in which we operate continued to be constrained with minimal growth in local demand resulting from negligible local investment and infrastructural spend. In the face of subdued economic growth, apparent steel consumption decreased further to its lowest level since 2010.
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Salient features
  • Revenue increased 19% following a 15% increase in average net steel prices;
  • Cash cost per tonne of liquid steel produced increased by 16% following higher input material prices;
  • Headline loss down from R2 589 million to R2 518 million;
  • Positive EBITDA of R650 million achieved in Q4 2017
Complete Salient features