US-based corrugated packaging company Westrock has posted a 12.5% net sales growth of $551m to $4.95bn for the first quarter (Q1) of fiscal 2022 (FY22), which ended on 31 December.

Sales for the company’s paper, corrugated packaging and consumer packaging segments rose by $262, $201m and $76m respectively during the quarter.

WestRock’s net income increased by 19.9% to $182m against Q1 2021, while its consolidated adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose by $11m to $680m, up by 1.6% from last year.

During the three-month period, the company’s earnings per share (EPS) increased by 19.3% to $0.68 compared with an EPS of $0.57 a year earlier. Its adjusted EPS also grew by 6.6% to $0.65.

WestRock CEO David Sewell said: “I am pleased with our strong performance during the first quarter of FY22, in which our teams delivered record first-quarter sales and double-digit EPS growth while navigating the continued and unpredictable macroeconomic landscape.

“We also delivered solid margin performance in the face of continued supply chain disruption, higher inflation and increased absenteeism associated with Covid-19.

“As we look to FY22, we are continuing to execute our transformation programme, which included reorganising our operating businesses to better align with our strategy to deliver profitable growth and to increase transparency into our performance.

“In addition, we continue to hire key talent, including new chief financial officer, Alex Pease, and new chief supply chain officer, Peter Anderson, who both bring deep experience and fresh perspective to these critical roles.”

In November last year, WestRock reported a 7% increase in its full-year net sales for fiscal 2021 (FY21).

Earlier this week, the company announced plans to build a corrugated box plant in Longview, Washington, to serve customers in the Pacific North-West.

The plant will replace WestRock’s existing corrugated operations in Longview and be co-located with the company’s paper mill operations in the city.