integrico expands product line, restructures management
“We’re excited about our leading position in new markets with substantial future growth opportunities,” Singer says. “We have established trust with our vendors and customers and positioned the business on strong financial footing that will serve as a springboard for continued growth while continuing to benefit the environment.”
The company says its pipeline skids and construction matting parts are highly resistant to rot, insect and chemical damage. Additionally, the composite matting parts do not absorb construction site and drill site liquid contaminants, making them easy to dispose of at end of life.
The strategic repositioning of the company follows a recapitalization effect led by affiliates of Miami-based investment firm Purchase Capital LLC, Singer’s family office, with participation from Acadia Woods Partners LLC, a New York-based investment firm that primarily invests in companies operating in the technology, software and life science sectors
DS Smith, a sustainable packaging company with headquarters in London, has appointed Mike Harrison as its new managing director of recycling in southern Europe. Reporting to Rogier Gerritsen, head of recycling at DS Smith, Harrison will be responsible for recycling operations across Italy, Iberia and France
With more than 20 years of experience in the sector, Harrison is rejoining DS Smith from Suez Trading Europe, where he was recovered paper market director. Prior to this, Harrison spent more than five years at DS Smith holding senior recycling roles in Europe and North America, the company states in a news release on Harrison’s appointment
Based in DS Smith’s offices in Paris, Harrison will bring his experience to the role and is responsible for managing a portfolio of about 2 million metric tons of recovered paper and cardboard for DS Smith and its third-party mill network
“I am excited to be rejoining the recycling division of DS Smith and to be working closely with customers to drive closed-loop solutions wherever we can," Harrison says. "Recycling is high on both consumer and commercial agendas at the moment, and I know I am joining a company that is well placed to take advantage of the opportunities created by the increased demands we are seeing for paper-based packaging.”
Gerritsen adds, “Mike’s experience will be valuable as we manage new challenges in our industry, not least the shift of more cardboard packaging into domestic recycling streams. As part of our European management team he will play a key role in delivering our strategy to collect and source quality paper and cardboard from both commercial and domestic streams.”
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., Mills River, North Carolina, and American Recycling of Western North Carolina, a recycler based in Candler, North Carolina, have announced the formation of the Western North Carolina (WNC) Brewery Recycling Cooperative and the opening of a new recycling drop-off site in Asheville, North Carolina. According to a news release from Sierra Nevada Brewing, the cooperative and the new drop-off site, which is set to open in the coming months, will create infrastructure for the area’s more than 80 breweries to recycle common industry materials that were going to landfill.
Sierra Nevada reports that the new recycling cooperative will be available to breweries and small businesses across western North Carolina in order to increase the area’s ability to recycle commercial materials.
“This is a win-win for both the local breweries and American Recycling,” says Ron Moore, owner of American Recycling of Western North Carolina. “We want to thank Sierra Nevada and all of the others that have helped to make this possible.”
Sierra Nevada spearheaded the effort, partnering with American Recycling and local breweries to develop the cooperative and collect matching funds for the construction of the drop-off site. Other participating breweries include Asheville Brewing Co., Bhramari Brewing Co., Buchi, Burial Beer Co., Catawba Brewing Co., Hi-Wire Brewing, New Belgium Brewing Co., Wicked Weed Brewing and Zillicoah Beer Co
“Many craft breweries use traditional recycling methods where all recyclables are collected together,” Cooper says. “Because of this, they can’t recycle common industry waste like malt bags, shrink wrap and [polyethylene terephthalate] strapping.”
To combat this, Sierra Nevada started allowing local breweries to drop off recyclable materials at its Mills River facility, which has the volume and infrastructure needed to recycle common industry materials. Sierra Nevada reports that it had become overwhelmed by the demand and realized the opportunity for a cooperative in the community. The companies say the WNC Brewery Recycling Cooperative will be unique in its breadth and impact
“We’ve taken into account the 80+ breweries in our region,” Cooper adds. “And while the cooperative was created with breweries in mind, it will also be open to any business with similar materials interested in participating.”
Brussels-headquartered precious metals recycler and refiner Umicore says it posted its strongest financial performance ever in 2020, despite the severe disruption brought by the COVID-19 pandemic in its end markets. The company attributes the results in part to an exceptional platinum group metals (PGM) price environment, noting in its earnings presentation that rhodium prices, in particular, "surged in the second half of 2020 in a context of tight supply and high demand from the car industry as a result of increasingly stringent emission norms."
After solid performance in the first half of 2020, with strong results in its Recycling segment offsetting the impact of the automotive industry downturn on the results of its Catalysis and Energy & Surface Technologies divisions, the second half of the year saw a strong sequential improvement in the group’s revenues and earnings driven by continued operational performance and high metal prices in Recycling, as well as strong growth in Catalysis, the company says. Full-year adjusted earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) were 536 million euros, up 5 percent compared to the previous year, while adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) increased by 7 percent to 804 million euros
Umicore’s Recycling business doubled its adjusted EBIT relative to 2019, driven by strong growth across business units, reflecting high metal prices, high activity levels despite the COVID-19 crisis and favorable trading conditions
While the company says its revenues in Catalysis decreased, its strong market position in gasoline technologies for light-duty vehicles, particularly in China and Europe, and higher sales of heavy-duty diesel and fuel cell catalysts, ensured that decrease was less than what occurred in the global car market. Adjusted EBIT declined more than revenues for the full year, reflecting the significant impact of the pandemic in the first half of the year, Umicore adds
Revenues for Energy & Surface Technologies reflected the impact of the pandemic as well as lower sales of cathode materials for high-end portable electronics and energy storage applications. The decline in adjusted EBIT was more pronounced, reflecting significant negative operating leverage and the impact of an unfavorable pricing environment for cathode materials due to substantial industry overcapacity in China, according to the company.
Umicore’s supervisory board and CEO Marc Grynberg, who has led the company since 2008, say this is a good time to start preparing for a succession plan for the CEO role. The supervisory board will begin work to identify a successor who will build on company’s fundamentals to bring Umicore to its next stage of development
“Marc is Umicore’s longest-serving CEO to date and, since 2008, he has shaped Umicore’s strategy with foresight and determination,” says Thomas Leysen, chairman of the supervisory board. “I know Marc as a leader who is driven by values and cares for people, which has earned him the respect of all Umicore’s stakeholders. I have always enjoyed working with Marc and I am glad that Umicore can continue to count on his full engagement until a worthy successor is appointed and takes over.”
Grynberg says, “I am proud of the manner in which we have transformed Umicore over the past 12 years and prepared this wonderful company for further growth. Our success would not have been possible without the support of Thomas Leysen, the supervisory board and the talent, dedication and hard work of my management board and our 11,000 colleagues. I will lead Umicore with as much engagement, energy and passion as ever until my successor is in place, and I will be pleased to assist the board with a smooth transition in due course.”
Despite the significant challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the long-term drivers that support Umicore’s growth strategy remain intact, according to the company. The push toward clean mobility is stronger than ever, with various governments including green recovery measures and stimuli for cleaner mobility in their crisis recovery packages, in particular Europe and China.
Against this background, Umicore chose to move forward with its ambitious growth strategy in cathode materials and made significant progress with the construction of its greenfield plant in Nysa, Poland, which upon commissioning by the end of the first half of 2021, will be the first industrial-scale cathode materials plant in Europe, the company says. In addition, Umicore is moving ahead with its growth plans in fuel cells for automotive applications as well as the expansion in its light-duty and heavy-duty catalyst production in China to cater to growing demand for its technologies as emission norms continue to strengthen.
While the global economy is showing signs of recovery from the severe downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in the first half of 2020, a high degree of uncertainty remains with respect to the evolution of the pandemic and the pace and speed of the recovery in different regions, Umicore says. As a result, visibility on end market demand remains poor. Against this backdrop and under the assumption that the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak would not result in additional material or protracted disruptions to the economy or Umicore’s operations, the company says it expects to achieve substantial growth in earnings in 2021, with growth in all business groups:
Catalysis should benefit from its technology offering in gasoline applications in China and Europe, the initial impact of China VI legislation for heavy-duty diesel applications and savings from the footprint adjustments and cost improvements carried out in 2020