CIECH's results in the third quarter: higher EBITDA and revenues, good prospects for the soda market

In the third quarter of 2021, the CIECH Group generated a higher (adj.) EBITDA1 result than in the previous year (PLN 145 million vs. PLN 142 million), while operating in an environment of dynamic growth in raw material prices and other costs. After 9 months of 2021, the generated (adj.) EBITDA is 33 percent higher on the year-on-year basis (PLN 554 million). The demanding situation on the commodity markets and the inflationary trends did not affect the pace of the implementation of the largest investment programme in the history of the Group, successfully financed by cash flows generated by CIECH. Flexible response to the turmoil related to raw material prices and supply chains enabled the Group to maintain its EBITDA margin at the level of almost 20 percent. The estimated increase in demand on the global sodium carbonate market, the systematic improvement in the capacity of the new salt plant in the coming months, and the dynamic development of other businesses, create a favourable environment for further improving the efficiency and business activity of the CIECH Group.


  • Consolidated revenues of the CIECH Group for the third quarter of 2021 amounted to PLN 772 million, which entails an increase by 12%. Cumulatively, after 9 months of 2021, revenues increased by 14%, to PLN 2,468 million. 
  • (adj.) EBITDA amounted to PLN 145 million, compared to PLN 142 million a year earlier, and the (adj.) EBITDA margin, burdened with the effects of rising inflation, stood at 18.7%. The result for the three quarters of 2021 was 33 % higher on the year-on-year basis (PLN 554 million vs. PLN 417 million). 
  • Financial results are also better than those before the pandemic – compared to the same period of 2019, EBITDA and revenues improved by 29% and 13% respectively. 
  • In terms of net results, in the third quarter of 2021, the Group recognised a profit of PLN 41 million. Fixed cash expenses remained under control, growing 5% on the year-on-year basis. Capital expenditure, at the culmination of the Group's investment programme, in the third quarter, amounted to PLN 177 million. 
  • The net debt to EBITDA ratio remained at a safe level and stood at 2.27 (calculated for the needs of loan covenants before the entry of IFRS 16). 
  • The Group achieved 76-79 percent of the (adj.) EBITDA result assumed in the forecast from April 2021 and 75-79 percent of forecasted revenue. 


- In the face of rapid increases in the prices of gas, coal, CO2 emission allowances, as well as costs related to, among others, logistics, we managed to respond quickly, increasing the prices of our products, which, combined with cost discipline, enables us to maintain our margins at a high level. Thanks to the measures taken before the pandemic, today, under these difficult conditions, we are able to implement the largest investment programme in the history of the Group, financed largely from our current operating cash flows. The results achieved are not only better than in the pandemic-stricken 2020, but also in comparison to 2019, we experienced progress in terms of both profitability and financial efficiency ratios as well as our debt parameters – says Dawid Jakubowicz, President of the Management Board of CIECH S.A.


On the main market of CIECH's operations - the production and sale of soda ash - the demand is clearly growing, driven by the post-pandemic economic recovery, e.g. in new businesses: production of lithium batteries and solar panels, where this sodium is used. Additionally, the one can observe the reversal of the long-term trend on the Chinese market and a shift in China's position from an exporter to a net importer of this raw material. This may entail an increase in the volumes of soda ash sent to Asia from North America and Asia Minor, which would affect the volumes sold on the European market, being the market of CIECH’s operations. In addition, the utilisation of production capacity has reached a historically high level, which means that in the face of forecasted high demand, soda ash shortages in global markets may persist for the next 2 or 3 years.


In the high-margin sodium bicarbonate segment, of which CIECH is the second largest producer in Europe, sales increased by nearly 20% y-o-y.


In the salt business, the commissioning of a new evaporated salt plant is underway. Currently, the estimated 2022 production volume is approx. 300-350 thousand tonnes.


The effects of the Agro business transformation, in the seasonally weaker third quarter, made it possible to generate EBITDA of PLN 14 million (in the third quarter of 2020, the result was PLN 0 million), and revenues at the level of PLN 71 million (an increase by 51%). CIECH Sarzyna is systematically strengthening its share in the domestic market of plant protection products, and abroad it registers its newest product – Halvetic – in other countries, a product characterised by an innovative technology to reduce the amount of the active substance (glyphosate), while maintaining its effectiveness. The market for glyphosate – the most popular substance used in crop protection around the world – is estimated at around USD 300 million in Europe alone.


The double-digit increases in revenues and EBITDA (24% and 16% respectively) are attributable to the Foams business, and the continuity of deliveries to customers, despite the difficulties related to the availability of key raw materials, was an achievement of equal significance.


The continuation of the rebound is also visible in the results of our Silicates business, where revenues and EBITDA in the third quarter improved on the year-on-year basis by 15 and 8 percent respectively. The investment worth PLN 80 million – in a new, energy-saving silicate production furnace in Żary – will affect the results of the fourth quarter, and in the full year of operation of the furnace, it will allow the entire business to increase revenues by approx. PLN 60 million (in 2020, its revenues amounted to PLN 173 million ).


The second wave of the coronavirus in 2020 and the related restrictions are reflected in the results of the Packaging business - last year's lockdown and closed cemeteries resulted in an accumulation of lantern inventories at customers supported by CIECH Vitro.


Carbon dioxide emissions, compared to the base year (2019), decreased by approx. 6% after 9 months. A greater share in the decrease was due to the reduction of emissions from the production process (a decrease by 11%), compared to energy production (a decrease by 5%).


- We can see the challenges related to the macroeconomic situation: rising prices of raw materials and more expensive CO2 emission allowances. We have taken specific measures to mitigate these risks, such as using hedging instruments. At the same time, the expected growing demand for soda ash and the significant changes on the Asian market, the commissioning of the salt plant according to the plan, the dynamic development and ambitious Agro business plans, as well as the completed investment in silicates, supported by cost discipline and numerous initiatives increasing business efficiency, allow for an optimistic perception of the business environment over the next quarters. – says Dawid Jakubowicz.



Mirosław Kuk, Rzecznik Prasowy Grupy CIECH, tel. +48 723 66 86 86.


CIECH to międzynarodowa, grupa chemiczna z silną pozycją na rynkach globalnych. Jest drugim producentem sody kalcynowanej i oczyszczonej w Unii Europejskiej, największym producentem soli warzonej w Polsce, największym dostawcą krzemianów sodu w Europie, największym polskim producentem środków ochrony roślin oraz wiodącym w Polsce producentem pianek poliuretanowych. Posiada fabryki w Polsce, Niemczech i Rumunii oraz zatrudnia ponad 3 tysiące osób w całej UE.


Od 2005 roku spółka CIECH S.A. notowana jest na Giełdzie Papierów Wartościowych w Warszawie, a od 2016 roku, równocześnie, na jednej z największych giełd w Europie - Börse Frankfurt. Rozwój Grupy wspiera inwestor strategiczny – Kulczyk Investments.


Jako jeden z największych polskich eksporterów, CIECH wysyła swoje towary na niemal wszystkie kontynenty. Powstają z nich artykuły niezbędne w codziennym życiu milionów ludzi na całym świecie, dlatego Grupa jest ważnym elementem wielu gałęzi gospodarki – budownictwa, motoryzacji, rolnictwa, przemysłu chemicznego, spożywczego czy farmaceutycznego.


CIECH łączy nowoczesne podejście do biznesu z dbałością o zrównoważony rozwój. Od 2020 roku jest członkiem United Nations Global Compact – największej na świecie inicjatywy skupiającej przedsiębiorstwa odpowiedzialne społecznie, środowiskowo i ekonomicznie.


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1(Adj.) EBITDA – adjusted EBITDA result, exclusive of any one-offs.

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