Ball reports strong 2021 results

Ball Corporation has reported, on a US GAAP basis, full-year 2021 net earnings of US$878 million, compared to US$585 million net earnings on sales of US$11.8 billion in 2020.

The company’s full-year 2021 comparable net earnings were US$1.16 billion, or US$3.49 per diluted share compared to US$987 million, or US$2.97 per diluted share in 2020.

John A. Hayes, chairman and chief executive officer at Ball Corporation, said, “We delivered a strong finish to 2021 and returned approximately US$950 million to shareholders after deploying US$1.7 billion of capital expenditures to support our growth during the year. Underlying demand for Ball’s sustainable aluminium packaging portfolio and innovative aerospace technologies continues to outpace supply. During the fourth quarter, the company increased comparable earnings per diluted share by 20% compared to fourth quarter 2020.”

Beverage Packaging, North and Central America

Beverage packaging, North and Central America, comparable segment operating earnings for full-year 2021 were US$681 million on sales of US$5.9 billion compared to US$683 million on sales of US$5.1 billion in 2020. Year-over-year sales reflect higher shipments, the contractual pass through of higher aluminium costs and improved price/mix.

Demand for aluminium beverage packaging continues to outstrip supply across North America. In addition to the company’s new Glendale, Arizona, and Pittston, Pennsylvania, beverage can manufacturing facilities becoming operational in 2021, the company will initiate construction of new beverage can manufacturing facilities in North Las Vegas, Nevada, and Concord, North Carolina, in 2022 and 2023, respectively, to serve long-term committed volume with global and regional strategic customers serving all beverage categories.

Beverage Packaging, EMEA

Beverage packaging, EMEA, comparable segment operating earnings for full-year 2021 were US$452 million on sales of US$3.5 billion compared to US$354 million on sales of US$2.9 billion in 2020.

Full-year comparable segment operating earnings increased 28% and reflect 8% segment volume growth, higher specialty mix and strong year-over-year consumption trends across Europe.

Packaging mix shift to sustainable aluminium cans continues, and demand is outstripping supply. UK, Russia and Czech Republic during 2022, will enable further volume and operating earnings growth and are supported by long-term contracts.

Beverage Packaging, South America

Beverage packaging, South America, comparable segment operating earnings for full-year 2021 were US$348 million on sales of US$2.0 billion compared to US$280 million on sales of US$1.7 billion in 2020.

Full-year comparable segment operating earnings increased 24% and reflect 3% segment volume growth.

To support long-term contracted volume growth and can-filling investments across South America, the company’s new beverage can manufacturing facility in Frutal, Brazil, will start up its second line during the first quarter of 2022, and additional investments across its remaining South American footprint will continue.

Non-reportable

In addition to undistributed corporate expenses, the results for the company’s global aluminium aerosol business, beverage can manufacturing facilities in India, Saudi Arabia and Myanmar and investments in the company’s aluminium cup business continue to be reported in other non-reportable.

Full-year results reflect higher year-over-year undistributed corporate expenses and marketing costs associated with the aluminium cup national retail launch and its return to venues and stadiums across the US, offset by stronger year-over-year performance achieved in the aluminium aerosol business and other non-reportable beverage can manufacturing facilities. During the fourth quarter, the company’s global aluminium aerosol customers continued to pursue sustainable personal care packaging solutions including the company’s new Infinity aluminium bottle and refillable aluminium bottles for new categories.

Outlook

“The company is well-positioned for long-term growth, cost/price recovery and increasing return of value to shareholders. Our businesses’ resiliency, financial strength and ability to effectively manage the business during evolving economic environments reflects who we are and have always been. We look forward to reaping higher returns on newly commissioned investments, pursuing additional organic growth opportunities backed by long-term contracts with global strategic partners and increasing the return of value to shareholders through share repurchases and dividends in 2022,” said Scott C. Morrison, executive vice president and chief financial officer at Ball Corporation.

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