French industrial recycling company Recylex delivered a “satisfactory” performance in its first-half sales results to June 30, with income rising 9% year-on-year, as growing volumes made up for declining lead prices.

Sales for the period totalled €220.5 million ($296.9 million), up from €202.8 million for the same period last year, primarily on the back of an 11% jump in lead sales income to €167 million. Zinc sales also rose in the period, by 4% to €33.7 million.

The rise in lead volume was in part a result of a “favourable comparison base”, as volumes for the first half of 2013 were impeded by a three-week maintenance shutdown in March 2013.

But the fall in lead prices, and the production lost following the shutdown of the FMM smelter in late 2013, weighed on lead sales income.

“In the lead segment, the increase in sales volumes achieved through productivity gains at the Nordenham smelter and the absence of any maintenance shutdowns during the period more than made up for the fall in lead prices,” Yves Roche, Recylex chairman and ceo said in a statement.

The average lead price declined by 4% from the start of the year to June 30, averaging at €1,533 per tonne, a drop of more than 7% from the level recorded in the first half of 2013.

The average zinc price increased by just under 2% to €1,497 per tonne, pushing up zinc sales income, while volumes were stable year-on-year.

Special metal sales dropped 5% to €10.7 million, primarily because of a fall in sales of high-purity arsenic and germanium. Plastics sales were up 10% to €9.1 million.

Recylex has been searching for €16 million in external financing to cover its projected cash requirements during 2014 and 2015 to finalise its continuation plan, and says it has received several conditional offers.

It is in the process of negotiating the terms and working on the conditions of one of the offers received, and aims to finalise the negotiation by the end of the third quarter this year.

Chloe Smith

Twitter: @ChloeSmith_MB