The Australian-owned company identified higher ferrous and non-ferrous average selling prices, active margin management and favourable competitive market conditions as the drivers behind the increase.
Sims added that its “controllable costs” were 10.8% lower than in the 2020 financial year, following “targeted restructuring initiatives”.
Though the results represent an improvement on the 2020 financial year for Sims, some aspects of the business have yet to recover to where they were prior to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Sims says that while proprietary intake volumes increased by 18.5% from the 2020 financial year, they were only 87% of the 2019 intake levels. Sims says this reflects the closure of 14 “unprofitable facilities” since the 2019 financial year and continued Covid-19 limitations on inbound supply.
Sims says it had A$64.2 million in deferred tax assets in the UK during and prior to the 2020 financial year. The company says this was not “recognised” in 2021 as “there is still uncertainty of consistent future profitability for utilisation in a reasonable period of time”.
Globally, Sims Limited announced profits before tax of A$386.6 million in 2021, A$444.5 million higher than in 2020.
“I’m pleased with the strong and sustained second-half recovery and the substantial progress made in advancing our growth strategy during FY21”
The company attributed its “strong earnings growth” to higher sales volumes, active margin management, and lower predominantly fixed costs.
Alistair Field, Sims Limited’s CEO and managing director, said: “I’m pleased with the strong and sustained second-half recovery and the substantial progress made in advancing our growth strategy during FY21, which coupled with the positive medium- and long-term industry drivers, stand us in good stead for FY22 and beyond.
“I would like to thank all Sims’ employees. FY20 was a really challenging year and it would have been easy to slow down in FY21 as the business improved. Rather, our employees have captured the opportunities in a very safe and sustainable manner.”
Ferrous and non-ferrous recycling
Founded in Australia in 1917, Sims specialises in ferrous and non-ferrous metals recycling, post-consumer electronic goods recycling, and municipal waste recycling. Its nearly 4,000 employees operate from more than 200 facilities across 15 countries.
In the UK, Sims operates more than 40 metals recycling sites.