North American Tissue News

Clearwater Paper delivers strong first-quarter performance

“Our tissue volumes stabilized, and pricing improved, which drove performance improvement relative to the fourth quarter of last year” - Arsen Kitch

Clearwater Paper Corporation, a premier supplier of quality tissue and bleached paperboard products, reported financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2022.

“Our performance in the first quarter exceeded our expectations due to strong operational execution and improved pricing in both businesses,” said Arsen Kitch, president and chief executive officer. “Our paperboard business continued to experience strong demand and pricing, and we were able to produce and sell more volume than anticipated. Our tissue volumes stabilized, and pricing improved, which drove performance improvement relative to the fourth quarter of last year.”

OVERALL RESULTS

For the first quarter of 2022, Clearwater Paper reported net sales of $488 million, a 15% increase compared to net sales of $426 million for the first quarter of 2021. Net income for the first quarter of 2022 was $17 million, or $0.97 per diluted share, compared to net income for the first quarter of 2021 of $12 million, or $0.71 per diluted share. On a non-GAAP basis, Clearwater Paper reported adjusted net income in the first quarter of 2022 of $18 million, or $1.03 per diluted share, compared to first quarter 2021 adjusted net income of $12 million, or $0.69 per diluted share. Adjusted EBITDA for the quarter was $59 million, compared to the first quarter of 2021 Adjusted EBITDA of $54 million.

Pulp and Paperboard Products Segment

Net sales in the Pulp and Paperboard Products segment were $266 million for the first quarter of 2022, up 21% compared to first quarter 2021 net sales of $220 million. Segment operating income for the first quarter of 2022 was $50 million compared to $25 million for the first quarter of 2021. Adjusted EBITDA for the segment was $60 million in the first quarter of 2022, compared to $34 million in the first quarter of 2021. The increase in operating income and Adjusted EBITDA was driven by higher sales prices offset by inflation, specifically related to chemicals, freight and energy.

Paperboard Sales Volumes and Prices:

  • Paperboard sales volumes were 201,356 tons in the first quarter of 2022, a decrease of 3% compared to 206,712 tons in the first quarter of 2021.
  • Paperboard average net selling price increased 23% to $1,263 per ton for the first quarter of 2022, compared to $1,028 per ton in the first quarter of 2021.

Consumer Products Segment

Net sales in the Consumer Products segment were $223 million for the first quarter of 2022, up 7% compared to the first quarter 2021 net sales of $208 million. Segment operating income for the first quarter of 2022 was $1 million compared to operating income of $18 million in the first quarter of 2021. Adjusted EBITDA for the segment was $16 million in the first quarter of 2022, down from $35 million in the first quarter of 2021. The decrease in operating income and Adjusted EBITDA was driven by higher input costs due to inflation, specifically related to pulp and transportation partially offset by higher sales prices.

Retail Tissue Sales Volumes and Prices:

  • Retail tissue volumes sold were 75,426 tons in the first quarter of 2022, an increase of 7% compared to 70,762 tons in the first quarter of 2021.
  • Retail tissue selling prices increased 4% to $2,872 per ton in the first quarter of 2022, compared to $2,758 per ton in the first quarter of 2021.

COMPANY OUTLOOK

“Our first quarter performance represents a strong start to 2022. Inflationary pressures are expected to persist in 2022, which we are offsetting with higher sales prices that were previously announced and operational improvements. Given our strong performance and improved outlook for the year, we are on track to achieve our leverage ratio sooner than anticipated and are resuming our previously approved stock repurchase program,” concluded Kitch.

Source
Clearwater Paper
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