Egypt’s EFIC aims to launch compound fertiliser production line

The project to be announced within three to six months

  
Image used for illustrative purpose. Egyptian specialty fertiliser and chemical producer Evergrow is investing in two new projects between 2019 and 2023

Image used for illustrative purpose. Egyptian specialty fertiliser and chemical producer Evergrow is investing in two new projects between 2019 and 2023

Evergrow handout via Thomson Reuters Projects

The Egyptian Financial and Industrial Company (EFIC) is looking to establish a new production line for some compound fertilisers, a source with the company has told Daily News Egypt.

The company is currently holding discussions at the Board of Directors level to do so, with the project to be announced within three to six months. A total of 80% of the new line’s production is expected to be exported, with the remaining 20% to be sold locally.

The company’s management expects the project to take around three years to break even and contribute to cash flow, and is expected to double profits. However, funding for the project has not yet been decided.

Plans for a potassium sulphate production line have been dismissed, and replaced with this new product line.

At the same time, EFIC’s local market share of 55%-60% is expected to be maintained in 2021. A total of 90% of the company’s production volume was sold locally during 2020, with the remaining 10% exported. It plans to increase its percentage of export sales in 2021 to about 20%.

The company’s management is expecting its working capital to increase by 10% in 2021, due to a stock-up of inventories, and to cover the increase in sulphur prices that occurs in cold weather.

EFIC has two plants in Egypt which produce Sulphuric Acid used as a raw material, as well as Single Super Phosphate-SSP, Powder Single Super Phosphate-PSSP, and Granulated Single Super Phosphate-GSSP.

EFIC’s 99.9% owned subsidiary, the Suez Company for Fertilizers, produces and exports Sulphuric Acid, Single Super Phosphate-SSP, Granulated Single Super Phosphate-GSSP, Ammonium Sulphate, and Di-Calcium Phosphate.

The Suez Company’s IPO, or merger plans, are tied to the funding plan of the new production line, since they are correlated.

In case EFIC went for the Suez Company IPO, they will generate cash for the short term, but will lose a portion of its earnings generated by Suez Company in the long term. This is then not a preferred option.

Naeem Research sees that net profit for 2020 is expected to be within the range of EGP120m-EGP 135m, and to increase slightly in 2021 to reach EGP 140m-EGP 160m. EFIC’s gross processing margin (GPM) should be stable at 20%-25% in 2021.

Naeem Research added that prices are not expected to differ in 2021 from those of 2020, since the prices of some raw materials are almost constant. However, if sulphur prices continue to increase due to the bad weather conditions at their main destinations in the Black Sea, prices for EFIC will increase by 1%-2%.

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