Special steel producer, Ovako Steel of Sweden reported full year results for 2012 of net sales €937M down 16% on sales of €1121M in 2011. Adjusted for a production stoppage at the Imatra steel mill, the decrease was 15%.

Operating profit fell 77% y-o-y to €20M (€90M in 2011) which corresponded to 2.1% of net sales (8.0% in 2011). The operating profit includes restructuring costs of €4M compared to zero for the previous year, the result was charged with €17M in negative foreign exchange effects and items of a non-recurring nature related to restructuring costs and costs for previously entered hedging contracts on electricity.

Cash flows from operations amounted to €87M (€56M), an improvement of 55% compared to the previous year, due to reduced inventory and other working capital improvements.

Net debt was reduced by €34M during the year and contributed to an improvement in the net debt/equity ratio to 130%, compared to 137% at the end of 2011.

Demand during the first quarter 2013 is expected to remain at approximately the same level as in the second half of 2012, and thus be lower than in the first quarter of the previous year.