Risks and business uncertainties

Valmet's operations are affected by various strategic, financial, operational and hazard risks. Valmet takes measures to exploit emerging opportunities and to limit the adverse effects of potential threats. The assessment of risks related to sustainable development holds an important role in risk management. If such threats materialized, they could have material adverse effects on Valmet’s business, financial situation and operating result, or on the value of shares and other securities.

Threats related to global economy and markets

Financial uncertainty in the global economy, coupled with fluctuations in exchange rates, rising interest rates and tightening financial market regulations may have an adverse effect on the availability and price of financing from banks and capital markets and could reduce the investment appetite of Valmet’s customers. Valmet estimates that the high proportion of business derived from stable business (Services and Automation segments) and the geographical diversification will reduce the possible negative effects that market uncertainties may have.

If global economic growth weakens, it might have adverse effects on new projects under negotiation or on projects in the order backlog. Some projects may be postponed, suspended, or canceled. In the case of long-term delivery projects, initial customer advance payments are typically 10–30 percent of the value of the project, and customers make progress payments as the project is implemented. This significantly decreases the risks and financing requirements related to Valmet’s projects. Valmet continually assesses its customers’ creditworthiness and their ability to meet their obligations. As a rule, Valmet does not finance customer projects. If economic growth slows down significantly, the markets for Valmet’s products may shrink, which may lead to, for example, tougher price competition.

Increasing geopolitical tensions, change in political narratives, increase of protectionist and more political regulation, trade tensions and sanctions may create uncertainty to customers’ investment activity and impact Valmet’s operations. Changes and uncertainty in future regulation and legislation can have effects, especially on the energy business and the use of data.

Large fluctuations in energy prices can affect the global economy. These fluctuations can also affect Valmet and its customers.

Should the global issues with component availability and logistics continue, it could have adverse effects on Valmet's business.

Changes in labor costs and the prices of raw materials and components can affect Valmet’s profitability. Valmet’s goal is to offset inflation through increased productivity and price increases. It is possible, however, that tough competition in some product categories will make it difficult to pass on cost increases to product prices. On the other hand, some of Valmet’s customers are raw material producers and their ability to operate and invest may be enhanced by strengthening commodity prices and hampered by declining commodity prices.

To ensure a high level of quality in both production and services, it is important to sustain a high level of competence and talent availability. This includes, for example, maintaining efficient recruitment programs, utilization of existing talent and sharing knowledge globally.

Through acquisitions, Valmet may become exposed to risks associated with new markets and business environments. The actual acquisition process also includes risks. Other risks associated with acquisitions include, but are not limited to, integration of the acquired business, increased financial risk exposure, retention of key personnel and achieving the targets set for the acquired business.

Valmet’s operations, products and services rely largely on data networks, software and digital solutions. Any malfunctions and cybersecurity breaches in such networks, software and solutions as well as potential failures in information system development projects may adversely affect Valmet’s business and financial position and lead to reputational damage.

Potential collective disputes and labor and union strikes remain a risk to Valmet’s operations as they might have impact on the supply chain, business operations and customer deliveries by increasing the likelihood of interruptions. Valmet’s operations are dispersed all around the world, Valmet has a global customer base and our suppliers operate in several countries. This mitigates the overall impacts of risks to Valmet, should there be any disruptions in some isolated country or case. 

Epidemic outbreaks and potential pandemics remain a risk to Valmet’s operations. Pandemics might have an impact on customers' investment activity, the supply chain and business operations by increasing the likelihood of interruptions. Valmet’s operations are dispersed all around the world, Valmet has a global customer base and our suppliers operate in several countries. This mitigates the overall impacts of risks to Valmet, should there be any disruptions in some isolated country or case.

Management of project business risks important

An important part of Valmet’s business consists of projects. Pulp business projects in particular can be large, thus project-specific risk management is crucial. Key risks related to projects are project cost estimation, scheduling, project risk management, quality and performance risks, and materials management risks. Risk analysis shall, as a minimum, take place for all significant project quotations. The work concerning threat and opportunity assessment continues during the execution phase of the project. Risk management is based on careful planning and continuous, systematic monitoring and evaluation. Project risks are managed by improving and continuously developing project management processes and the related systems. 

Availability of financing crucial

Securing the continuity of Valmet’s operations requires sufficient available funding under all circumstances. Valmet estimates that its liquid cash assets and committed credit limits are sufficient to secure its immediate liquidity and to ensure the flexibility of financing. The average maturity of Valmet’s non-current debt, excluding lease liabilities, is 3.2 years. Loan facilities include customary covenants, and Valmet is in clear compliance with the covenants at the balance sheet date. 

Conflicts and geopolitical tensions

The war in Ukraine causes significant risks and uncertainties to the markets affecting the entire global economic environment and financial markets. The conflict in the Middle East causes supply chain issues and can increase transport costs and durations. If the conflicts are further prolonged or geopolitical tensions further increase, there could be additional adverse impacts on Valmet’s operations, customer investment activity, project deliveries, availability and prices of components, supply chain and availability of financing for both Valmet and its customers. Valmet monitors the situation and manages the Company's response to the impacts of the conflicts. 


Read more on risks and business uncertainties in the Half Year Financial Review January-June 2024.

More information on financial risk management here:

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More information on risk management at Valmet and risk profile:

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Valmet’s most important sustainability risks and opportunities:

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