4th quarter results

Sappi is a global diversified woodfibre company focused on providing dissolving wood pulp, packaging and speciality papers, printing and writing papers as well as biomaterials and biochemicals to our direct and indirect customer base across more than 150 countries.

Q4 2019

Financial results conference call


Our dissolving wood pulp products are used worldwide mainly by converters to create viscose fibre for fashionable clothing and textiles, as well as other consumer products; quality packaging and speciality papers are used in the manufacture of such products as soup sachets, luxury carry bags, cosmetic and confectionery packaging, boxes for agricultural products for export, tissue wadding for household tissue products and casting release papers used by suppliers to the fashion, textiles, automobile and household industries; our market-leading range of printing and writing papers are used by printers in the production of books, brochures, magazines, catalogues, direct mail and many other print applications; biomaterials include nanocellulose, fibre composites and lignosulphonate; biochemicals include second generation sugars.

The wood and pulp needed for our products are either produced within Sappi or bought from accredited suppliers. Sappi sells almost as much as it buys.


Sales by source* (%)

Sales by product* (%)

Sales by destination* (%)

Net operating assets** (%)

* For the period ended September 2019. ** As at September 2019.

Highlights for the quarter

EBITDA excluding special items
US$185 million
(Q4 FY18 US$224 million)

Profit for the period
US$50 million
(Q4 FY18 US$107 million)

Strong cash generation of
US$173 million
(Q4 FY18 US$26 million)

EPS excluding special items
10 US cents
(Q4 FY18 19 US cents)


Highlights for the year

EBITDA excluding special items
US$687 million
(FY18 US$762 million)

Profit for the period
US$211 million
(FY18 US$323 million)

EPS excluding special items
44 US cents
(FY18 60 US cents)

Net debt
US$1,501 million
(FY18 US$1,568 million)


Commentary on the quarter

Market conditions across Sappi's major product categories were challenging throughout the year. Dissolving wood pulp (DWP) market prices in China fell US$273/ton and had reached historic lows by year-end despite global demand growth of more than 6%, and we experienced prolonged weakness in global graphic paper markets. Additionally, demand for some of our packaging and speciality grades was also under pressure. Uncertainty as a result of the ongoing trade wars and slower economic growth in various geographies were the major drivers of the volatility encountered during the year.
View more on commentary on the quarter