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Business news in Slovenia

Impol scales down production due to declining demand

Slovenska Bistrica, 02 April (STA) - The Impol group, Slovenia's largest producer of finished and intermediate aluminium products, posted EUR 880 million in revenue in 2023, which is a 20% drop year-on-year and slightly below plans. Impol has reduced production due to a persistent decline in demand.

The group generated EUR 83 million in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) last year, which is also slightly below plans.

Taking into account its quantitative targets, the group's shortfall has been significantly greater, CEO Andrej Kolmanič told the STA.

The production volumes of the group, which is present in Slovenia, Croatia and Serbia, stood at 212,000 tonnes last year, a decrease of some 20,000 tonnes compared to the previous year, but thanks to cost-cutting measures the final figure neared the EBITDA target for 2023, he said.

The market has been affected by a significant decline in demand for the past two years, which has led to price reductions. Impol also faces tough new competition from Turkey, Bulgaria and China. "This of course puts us in a very challenging situation, if we want to maintain competitiveness," Kolmanič added.

Similar trends continue this year, and the company is doing all it can to increase the volume of demand.

Targets set for this year include 245,000 tonnes of production volumes, and based on current demand the goal should be achieved or even surpassed.

The plan is to top one billion euros in revenue again and get close to EUR 70 million in EBITDA.

The aluminium exchange price, which is low at the moment, has a major impact on the group's revenue, the CEO said, which means a completely different situation than in 2022, when Impol generated EUR 1.1 billion in revenue sales.

Despite these challenges, the group continues with its investment plan, which includes a new foundry in its plant in Croatia's Šibenik. The management hopes to acquire all the necessary permits for the project by the end of the year.

The group currently employs a total of 2,379 people, of which 1,423 work in its facility in Slovenska Bistrica. Despite last year's challenging situation, the headcount has not been reduced, on the contrary, there has been the need to employ additional workers.

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