SSAB’s adjusted operating result for the full-year 2022 was SEK 29.3 (18.8) billion, the highest in the company’s history. For the fourth quarter, the adjusted operating result was SEK 3.8 (7.0) billion. The net cash flow was strong, SEK 6.7 billion for the quarter, supported by release of working capital.
SSAB Europe adjusted production to a cautious European steel market and brought forward maintenance. They consolidated its position as leader in the green transition in the steel industry by making significant progress in the development of fossil-free steelmaking during 2022 and by delivering around 500 tonnes of fossil-free steel to strategic customers.
SSAB Special Steels had a planned maintenance outage during the fourth quarter and adjusted operating result was SEK 1,386 (1,540). The operating margin decreased to 16.6% (23.5%). SSAB Americas’ adjusted operating result increased to SEK 2,726 (2,188) million and the operating margin rose to 36.1% (35.6%). The companys´ strategy with leading positions in special steel and US heavy plate compensated for a weak European market, which together with maintenance meant that SSAB Europe’s adjusted operating result decreased to SEK -228 (3,301) million.
Safety performance continued to improve and Lost Time Injury Frequency (LTIF) decreased to 1.06 (1.80) during the full-year 2022.
The European market remained weak during the fourth quarter.
SSAB adjusted production and brought forward maintenance of one of the blast furnaces in Raahe. The assessment is that the market has stabilized, although there is continued uncertainty, and SSAB re-started the blast furnace at the start of this year.
During the fourth quarter, SSAB made a goodwill impairment of SEK 33.3 billion, which includes all the goodwill related to the acquisitions of Ipsco and Rautaruukki, completed in 2007 and 2014, respectively. The impairment is reported as an item affecting comparability and did not impact the cash flow. Background of the impairment was increased interest rates and a more prudent method in the impairment test.
SSAB has a strong financial position and the Board proposes a dividend of SEK 8.70 (5.25) per share for the year ended 2022.
The Board will propose an authorization for a share buyback program to the AGM.
During 2022, SSAB made further progress on the journey towards fossil-free steelmaking. Feasibility studies for cost-effective mini-mills in Luleå and Raahe are ongoing and the joint venture Hybrit continued to develop the technology for fossil-free ironmaking using hydrogen. During the fourth quarter, SSAB became the only steel company to be included in the Dow Jones Sustainability Europe Index 2022.