The state-owned Ukreximbank (Kyiv) has opened a long-term credit limit for Centravis Production Ukraine, part of Centravis Ltd., in the amount of EUR 35 million, which is equivalent to UAH 1.177 billion.
According to Centravis press release published on Thursday, March 4, the company is going to use these funds to produce new types of seamless pipes, introduce environmental and energy-saving technologies and further upgrade the production.
“The bank opened a credit limit of EUR 35 million for five years to maintain the high competitiveness of products in world markets as well as to ensure timely and full implementation of the investment program aimed at developing sales of high value-added products,” Director of Corporate Banking Department (private enterprises) at Ukreximbank Oleksandr Isniuk said, who is quoted by the press service.
In turn, Centravis CFO Alexandre Joseph added that raising funds in Ukreximbank would strengthen the company’s financial stability and would provide the opportunity to annually invest at least EUR 7 million in the development and output of new products.
“Since we work with world top brands, we need to be proactive and maintain focus on efficiency and customer service. We believe that cooperation with Ukreximbank is a classic win-win story for Ukraine. Our company exports over 98% of its products. The foreign exchange earnings amount to about EUR 150 million. This helps to improve the foreign trade balance of Ukraine and strengthen the ‘made in Ukraine’ presence in the world market,” Joseph said.
The press release recalled that despite the tailspin due to the coronavirus pandemic, Centravis maintained a stable position among the world’s best manufacturers of seamless pipes over 2020. The production volume amounted to 19,050 tonnes. The company doubled its EBITDA compared to 2019 — to EUR 14 million.
Centravis is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of seamless stainless steel pipes, founded in 2000. Its production facilities are located in Nikopol (Dnipropetrovsk region).
Centravis is one of the world’s top ten players, supplies products to ThyssenKrupp, BMW, Alstom, Linde, Samsung, Volkswagen and other companies. The company employs over 1,400 employees.
Ukreximbank, the sole owner of which is the state, was established in 1992. According to the National Bank of Ukraine, as of January 1, 2021, in terms of total assets (UAH 246.877 billion), Ukreximbank ranked third among 73 banks operating in the country.
PrJSC Centravis Production Ukraine, part of Centravis Ltd, doubled EBITDA in 2020 compared to the previous year, to EUR 14 million.
Chief Financial Officer Alexandre Joseph said at an online press conference of Centravis on Friday that the production of stainless pipes last year decreased by 9.3% compared to the previous year, to about 19,050 tonnes.
In 2021, it is planned to produce 17,500 tonnes of products.
CEO of the company Yuriy Atanasov said that a decrease in pipe production is planned as a result of a change in strategy, as well as a reduction in production capacity and personnel by 20-25% due to the fall of markets in 2020 due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
At the same time, he said that 2020 was a difficult year for the company due to lockdowns and falling demand. For Centravis, the fall in oil prices in early 2020 was significant, as this also affected suppliers of stainless pipes for the oil and gas industry. At the same time, during the spring lockdown in many countries, the company even increased its supply, but in the summer there was a decrease, in connection with which it had to cut production and staff. “We took an unprecedented step, we offered severance pay in the amount of from three to six salaries, depending on the length of service of employees, spending more than UAH 15 million on this, which is very significant for our company,” Atanasov said.
In a press release published by the company on Friday, it is stated that in 2020 Centravis has continued to develop sales in all regions of the world. The company supplies seamless pipes to the European Union, the Middle East, Latin America, Eastern Europe, the United States, India, Australia, Japan, Canada, and other regions and countries.
Among the key clients of Centravis in 2020 are Buhlmann Group, Damstahl GmbH, ThyssenKrupp, Salzgitter AG, and Karl Mertl Handelsges. The company has completed a number of large-scale orders for such global companies as Bousted International Heaters, Stainalloy Nederland, and Buhlmann Group.
“Last year has tested the strength of everyone without exception. I think we have coped with all the challenges. Our team has managed to adapt. We have improved our products and helped our customers to solve their problems. But most importantly, we have strengthened our stability and are ready to develop in 2021,”Atanasov said.
According to him, focus on product quality and high customer service has helped Centravis maintain a stable position among the world’s best manufacturers of seamless pipes.
Centravis Production Ukraine is the only specialized enterprise for the production of seamless stainless steel pipes in the CIS and the leading exporter in its segment.