aurubis copper recycling
Germany-based Aurubis has cited “significantly higher refining charges for copper scrap and other recycling materials” as one reason for its positive results.
Photo courtesy of Aurubis AG.

Aurubis reports black ink for red metals

Germany-based copper producer cites recycling operations as key driver of its profits.

August 6, 2021

Hamburg, Germany-based copper producer Aurubis AG says its fiscal third quarter “continued the positive trend of the current fiscal year” with earnings through nine months that are more than double those of the previous fiscal year.

The company has reported earnings before taxes of 268 million euros ($315 million) in the first nine months of its current fiscal year compared with 133 million euros ($156 million) in the same time frame last year.

Aurubis credits its acquisition of the Metallo Group refineries as one source of its increased revenue and earnings. “The substantial increase in copper scrap/blister copper (up 22 percent) and other recycling materials (up 54 percent) compared to the previous year is mainly due to the inclusion of the Beerse, Belgium, and Berango, Spain, [former Metallo] sites,” writes Aurubis. “This led to higher revenues from refining charges as well as higher metal sales volumes, especially for tin, zinc, nickel and lead.”

The metals recycling firm continues, “The excellent result was mainly influenced by significantly higher refining charges for copper scrap and other recycling materials, a considerably higher throughput of other recycling materials, and a higher concentrate throughput, which was counterbalanced by lower treatment and refining charges for copper concentrates due to market factors.”

Aurubis adds, “The only negative impact on the result was significantly higher energy costs due especially to increased electricity prices.”

Aurubis CEO Roland Harings says, “Aurubis’ development in the first nine months is extremely gratifying. Aurubis demonstrates that it is robust, even in uncertain times. We are benefiting from strong demand for our high-quality products, especially in the automotive, construction, energy and cable industries.”

One week ago, the company announced an investment to expand the capabilities of the scrap-fed former Metallo Group refinery in Belgium. Aurubis will build a hydrometallurgical Advanced Sludge Processing by Aurubis facility to extract metals from anode sludge, an intermediate byproduct from electrolytic copper refining.