Smurfit's good news
AND finally, some good news. Regular readers will need no reminding of how critical I have been of Smurfit Kappa for its failure to make meaningful inroads into its debt mountain. Until last week.
At the end of September Smurfit had net borrowings of €3.12bn, a reduction of €168m over the previous three months. The company also pushed up its operating margin from 6.3 to 8.4 per cent.
While Smurfit's borrowings are still the equivalent of almost twice its €1.67bn market capitalisation, a few more quarters like this and the balance sheet will start looking almost healthy.