Executive Board Statement on Business Development and on the Group’s Economic Position

In 2020, WACKER’s operations were characterized by the worldwide economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Sales were down substantially in the second quarter, but picked up again overall in the second half of 2020. Among our chemical divisions, WACKER posted the steepest decline in sales, due to reduced volumes and to lower average prices for standard silicones. Sales at WACKER came in only slightly lower than in the previous year, while WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS managed to grow its sales slightly. WACKER also recorded a slight increase in sales, underpinned by volume growth.

Earnings in the chemical divisions were depressed by lower average sales prices for some product groups, as well as by reduced volumes and negative exchange-rate effects. Positive effects on , on the other hand, came from lower raw-material costs and from measures to improve productivity. improved significantly year over year. WACKER POLYSILICON’s EBITDA was slightly positive in 2020, primarily due to successful cost-cutting measures and volume growth.

Personnel expenses rose, both in absolute terms and as a percentage of sales, due to higher expenses for pensions and variable compensation. Raw-material costs declined in absolute terms and as a proportion of sales. Energy costs were lower year over year, especially because of the decline in natural-gas prices. Depreciation and amortization were substantially lower, both in absolute terms and as a percentage of sales.

At €1.69 billion, Group equity was down €337.2 million year over year. This was mainly caused by the recognition in other comprehensive income of changes in provisions for pensions. The declined from 31.3 percent to 24.3 percent. The Group’s net financial debt decreased significantly. Substantial reductions in current assets, coupled with significantly reduced investment spending, were among the causes of that decline. Net financial debt amounted to €67.5 million as of December 31, 2020. Capital expenditures decreased significantly year over year. At €224.4 million, they were clearly below depreciation/amortization. of €697.7 million was substantially higher than in the previous year.

Given the coronavirus pandemic’s severe impact on the global economy, WACKER performed well overall in 2020. The composition of the portfolio once again proved its worth in the present crisis, enabling the company to at least partially offset weaknesses in specific industries.

General term used to describe compounds of organic molecules and silicon. According to their areas of application, silicones can be classified as fluids, resins or rubber grades. Silicones are characterized by a myriad of outstanding properties. Typical areas of application include construction, the electrical and electronics industries, shipping and transportation, textiles and paper coatings.
A polymer is a large molecule made up of smaller molecular units (monomers). It contains between 10,000 and 100,000 monomers. Polymers can be long or ball-shaped.
Hyperpure polycrystalline silicon from WACKER POLYSILICON is used for manufacturing wafers for the electronics and solar industries. To produce it, metallurgical-grade silicon is converted into liquid trichlorosilane, highly distilled and deposited in hyperpure form at 1,000 °C.
Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization.
Return on Capital Employed (ROCE)
Return on capital employed is the profitability ratio relating to the capital employed. It is defined as earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) divided by capital employed. Investment income from Siltronic AG and the corresponding carrying amount in equity are not included when ROCE is calculated. ROCE is a clear indicator of how profitably the capital required for business operations is being employed. It is influenced not only by profitability, but also by capital intensity with regard to noncurrent assets required for business operations and to working capital. ROCE is reviewed annually as part of our planning process and is a key criterion for managing our capital expenditure budget.
Equity Ratio
The equity ratio is equity as a percentage of a company’s total assets. It is a measure of a company’s economic and financial stability.
Net Cash Flow
Net cash flow is defined as the sum of cash flow from operating activities and cash flow from long-term investing activities (excluding securities).

todo Vorjahresvergleich