DS Smith, a global packaging company, has recorded a total revenue of £6.82bn ($8.65bn) for financial year 2023/24 (FY23/24), marking a 17% decrease on a reported basis from £8.22bn in FY22/23.

The revenue drop was significantly impacted by a £129m decrease in box volumes and a substantial £1.173bn fall in selling prices.  

In the year, packaging prices also saw a downturn of £647m, about 10%, with the remaining difference due to decreased sales in external paper, recyclate, and energy. 

During the fiscal year ending 30 April 2024, statutory profit before tax on a reported basis stood at £503m, a 24% reduction from £661m in the previous year.  

Its operating profit also saw a downturn, decreasing by 18% to £604m against the prior year’s £733m while adjusted operating profit mirrored this trend, falling 19% to £701m from £861m in FY22/23. 

The company’s basic earnings per share from continuing operations also declined by 20% to 28.0 pence on a constant currency basis.  

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DS Smith ended the fiscal year with net debt of £2.23bn, increasing from £1.63bn in FY22/23. 

Despite these financial challenges, DS Smith has made significant strides in sustainability, surpassing its ‘2030 Now and Next’ goals by replacing more than one billion units of plastic with fibre-based alternatives since May 2020, well ahead of schedule.  

Additionally, the company reportedly achieved a 5% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions over the year. 

DS Smith chief executive Miles Roberts said: “We are pleased to have delivered a robust performance, despite the challenging environment, driven by our focus on customers, quality, service and innovation together with the benefit from our self-help productivity initiatives. 

“I am also very proud of the continued excellent progress in helping our customers’ sustainability challenges and to have achieved our target of one billion units of plastic replaced with fibre-based alternatives 16 months ahead of schedule.” 

In April this year, International Paper reached an agreement to acquire DS Smith for £5.8bn.