Results 2015: Following new paths with proven expertise

Under the chairmanship of Michel Wurth, the Ordinary General Meeting of shareholders of Société Anonyme Paul WURTH was held on 10 May 2016 to approve amongst others the financial statements of the year 2015.

Despite very gloomy business conditions, 2015 was quite a satisfactory year for the Paul Wurth Group, in particular with regard to new orders. At the same time, the company stepped up a number of growth initiatives, giving thereby important impetus for the group’s future business development.

Economic climate and commercial situation

In the steel industry, slower growth in emerging economies, overcapacities from China as well as constant price pressure on markets throughout the world continued in 2015 to put a strain on steel producers’ ability to invest.

However, new orders for the Group were more than 25% higher in 2015 than in the year before, equalling 456 million euros. This good commercial performance is the result of a combination of factors such as a strong and extended product portfolio, a good progression of the Group’s market share in the servicing segment and, to some extent, a spill over from investment projects negotiated in 2014. 

 Operational activity

Barely a year after signing a construction license agreement for Midrex? direct reduction plants, the Paul Wurth Group and its partner Midrex Technologies were awarded by Turkish steel producer Tosyali Holding, the project to design and build in Algeria the world’s largest multiple product direct reduced iron plant. Also from Algeria came now in April of this year another important order for building a second plant of similar design for the joint venture company Algerian Qatari Steel.

In blast furnace ironmaking, the year was mainly characterised by repair and modernisation projects. In Europe, in particular, Paul Wurth was able to differentiate itself from its competitors as a result of its technological and environmental solutions, securing orders from customers in Germany, France, Italy and in the Czech Republic, which had to undertake reline expenditure in order to preserve their installed production capacity.

In cokemaking, Paul Wurth consolidated its market position in 2015, particularly in the Japanese market. Paul Wurth won orders from leading Japanese steelmakers, such as NSSMC and JFE Steel, providing each of them with the design, supply and supervision of the commissioning of two coke oven batteries. A major portion of the local scope of these projects is handled by the joint venture Paul Wurth IHI Co., Ltd.

Results for the financial year 2015

While turnover for the year (427.9 million euro) was slightly down in comparison with 2014, Paul Wurth closed the financial year 2015 with earnings before tax of 20.6 million euros and a net profit of 13.7 million euros. The General Meeting approved the payment of a gross dividend of 157.5 euros per share on account of the 2015 financial year.

Innovation and business development

As there is no sign of any recovery in the steel markets for the foreseeable future, Paul Wurth will continue to strive to expand its offer of products and services. In its traditional area of hot metal production, agglomeration technology activities will now also include pellet production processes and plants, so that the entire primary stage of integrated steelmaking is covered.

In order to reduce Paul Wurth’s dependence on the steel industry, the company is stepping up initiatives to take its proven expertise to other sectors of industry and so develop new mainstays.

As a long-standing and experienced supplier of a variety of valves for metallurgical installations, Paul Wurth is offering, from the start of 2016, modern solutions of comparable special valves also for refineries and petrochemical plants.

An interesting growth market that the Paul Wurth Group is focusing on is also decentralised energy production using small, independent supply reactors. In this context, Paul Wurth and Boson Energy signed a double agreement on 2 May 2016. On the one hand, Paul Wurth takes a 20% minority equity stake in Boson Energy; on the other hand, both partners will closely co-operate for the implementation of sustainable solutions with regard to combined heat and power generation units.

Accelerator for start-up companies

Together with the Luxembourg business incubator Technoport?, Paul Wurth launched the “Paul Wurth InCub” programme to support young, innovative and technology-driven companies. Paul Wurth will not only provide office space and infrastructure on its premises, but offer above all technological and commercial support in the implementation of new projects, the focus being on ideas for new, environmentally-friendly solutions in the iron and steel industry, innovative energy production, industry 4.0, logistics and sustainable mobility as well as smart buildings. This exchange of ideas and expertise will create the opportunity for Paul Wurth to promote innovation, creativity and openness in-house and to make best use of competences and knowledge available on the market.


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