JOHANNESBURG, Aug. 16, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Sasol delivered a strong set of results for the year ended 30 June 2021. Our earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) of R16,6 billion increased by more than 100% compared to the prior year. This performance was underpinned by a strong cost, working capital and capital expenditure performance, despite
A notable gross margin recovery was recorded in the second half of the financial year, supported by the combined impact of higher Brent crude oil and chemicals prices, offset by a stronger rand/US dollar exchange rate.
Our earnings were mainly impacted by the following non-cash adjustments the net of which amounted to R15,4 billion:
Balance sheet management
Cash generated by operating activities increased by 6% to R45,1 billion compared to the prior year. This, together with the asset divestment programme, enabled the repayment of approximately R81 billion of debt, including the settlement of our rand denominated banking facilities of approximately R4 billion.
Actual capital expenditure amounted to R16,4 billion compared to R35,2 billion during 2020. The reduction in capital expenditure was carefully executed as a result of our optimised risk management focus whilst ensuring asset integrity and safety were not compromised.
Our net debt to EBITDA ratio at 30 June 2021, based on the revolving credit facility (RCF) and US dollar term loan covenant definition, was 1,5 times, significantly below the agreed threshold level. Although this ratio meets our targeted net debt to EBITDA level, we will continue with our efforts to reduce leverage and absolute debt levels further. This will create valuable financial flexibility as we execute our Future Sasol strategy in the midst of an uncertain macroeconomic environment. Our objective remains to steer the balance sheet metrics toward restoration of our investment grade levels.
During the year bonds of US$1,5 billion (R21,4 billion) were issued and listed on the New York Stock Exchange. At 30 June 2021, our total debt was R102,9 billion compared to R189,7 billion at 30 June 2020. During the year, we utilised proceeds from our asset divestments to repay the US dollar syndicated loan, a portion of our RCF and term loans, reducing our US dollar denominated debt by almost R76 billion (US$5 billion).
Our gearing decreased from 117,0% at 30 June 2020 to 61,5% at 30 June 2021 mainly due to repayment of US dollar debt and a stronger closing rand/US dollar exchange rate.
As at 30 June 2021, our liquidity headroom was R84 billion (US$5,9 billion), well above our outlook to maintain liquidity in excess of US$1 billion, with available rand and US dollar-based funds improving as we advance our focused management actions. We have no significant debt maturities before November 2022 when the US$1 billion bond becomes due.
In line with our financial risk management framework, we continue to make good progress with hedging our foreign currency, crude oil and ethane exposure. We have been successful in hedging our total oil exposure for 2022 which increases the certainty of future cash flows to reduce debt levels and enable us to execute on our Future Sasol strategy. For further details of our open hedge positions we refer you to our Analyst Book (www.sasol.com).
The restoration of dividends is a key priority, but in the context of the high level of macroeconomic uncertainty the Board believes it is prudent not to declare a dividend at this stage.
Changes in Directors
The following change to the Board occurred after the publication of the Company's interim financial results on 22 February 2021:
Mr S Subramoney was appointed as independent non-executive director and member of the Audit Committee with effect from 1 March 2021. The Company announced the appointment of Ms GMB Kennealy, an independent non-executive director, as Chairman of the Audit Committee effective 1 September 2021 upon the retirement of Mr C Beggs as independent non-executive director and Chairman of the Audit Committee on 31 August 2021.
Mr P Victor has informed the Company that he will step down as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and executive director of Sasol Limited on 30 June 2022. Mr H Rossouw has been appointed as CFO designate and executive director designate of Sasol to succeed Mr Victor. He will join Sasol on 4 April 2022 and will succeed Mr Victor as executive director and CFO on 1 July 2022.
This announcement is the responsibility of the directors. The information in this short-form announcement, including the financial information on which the outlook is based, has not been audited and reported on by Sasol Limited's external auditors. Financial figures in this announcement have been correctly extracted from the audited financial results. The audited financial results have been audited by the group's auditors, PwC who expressed an unmodified opinion thereon. A key audit matter relating to "Impairment assessment of property, plant and equipment and investments in subsidiaries" is addressed in PwC's independent auditor's report. This announcement does not include the information required pursuant to paragraph 16A(j) of IAS 34 'Interim Financial Reporting. It is only a summary of the information contained in the full announcement and does not contain full or complete details. Any investment decision should also take into consideration the information contained in the full announcement, published on SENS on 16 August 2021, via the JSE link. The full announcement and the FY21 audited financial results, which includes the auditor's report, will be available on the Company's website at https://www.sasol.com/investor-centre/financial-reporting/annual-integrated-reporting-set.
Capital Markets Day
Sasol's President and Chief Executive Officer, Fleetwood Grobler, together with his executive leadership team will be hosting a virtual Capital Markets Day, including a Q&A session, on Wednesday, 22 September 2021 at 12:00 (SA time).
Please join us for our 2021 virtual Capital Markets Day where we will provide an update on Sasol's longer-term strategy and sustainability ambitions, including our transition pathway until 2050.
Note to Editors:
The pre-recorded presentation is available on the following link:
The JSE link is as follows: https://senspdf.jse.co.za/documents/2021/JSE/ISSE/SOL/FY21Result.pdf
The President and Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer will host a conference call via webcast on Monday, 16 August 2021, at 15:00 (SA time) to discuss the results and give an update of the business.
Live conference call link: