The largest garbage and recycling companies in North America say they saw significant revenue boosts from rising values for recovered materials.
Waste Management, Republic Services and Waste Connections each reported higher recycling revenues, stemming largely from higher recovered material values. Waste Management and Republic both reported increases during the second quarter, as well.
The following is a breakdown of revenues for the three largest publicly traded companies involved in residential recycling in North America. The data was reported in quarterly filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Higher commodities prices in the third quarter helped give Houston-headquartered Waste Management a significant revenue boost.
In the third quarter, revenues from recycling commodities sales increased by $25 million year-over-year. That amounted to an 8.7 percent increase in revenue.
The boost was driven by an 11 percent increase in average commodity prices the company was able to fetch through its materials recovery facilities (MRFs) and recycling brokerage business. Looking strictly at the material sorted and sold at company MRFs, average commodity prices increased by 13.6 percent in the third quarter, and volumes were up 0.9 percent.
Waste Management’s overall recycling business brought in a total of $325 million during the quarter, up 9.4 percent year over year. Recycling now makes up about 9.2 percent of the company’s operating revenue.
Waste Management’s total revenue for the third quarter was $3.55 billion, up 5.6 percent year-over-year.
The Phoenix, Ariz.-based company brought in $114.6 million during the third quarter from the sale of recycled commodities. That was a 15.3 percent year-over-year increase in commodity sales revenues.
The company attributed the increased revenue to both higher commodity prices and processing fees. The average price for OCC during the quarter was $125 per ton, up 12.6 percent year over year. For ONP, the average price was $114 per ton, up 34.1 percent year over year.
Volumes were roughly flat year over year, at 700,000 tons.
Recycling now makes up about 4.8 percent of Republic’s revenue.
Republic’s total revenue during the third quarter was $2.41 billion, up 2.8 percent from the same quarter in 2015.
Waste Connections finalized the acquisition of Progressive Waste Solutions on June 1, moving its headquarters to Ontario, Canada.
In the third quarter, the newly combined company reported $29.6 million in revenue from its recycling business. In the third quarter of 2015, before it acquired Progressive, Waste Connections’ recycling revenue was $12.1 million. Total company revenue during the third quarter was $1.08 billion, compared to $548,000 the previous year, before the Progressive acquisition.
Excluding revenues from Progressive and other recently acquired companies, Waste Connections’ third quarter recycling revenues totaled $13.9 million. That was up about 15 percent year-over-year, CEO and Chairman Ronald Mittelstaedt told listeners on an Oct. 27 earnings call.
He pointed specifically to higher prices for fiber as a reason for the increased revenue. OCC averaged $123 per ton during the third quarter, up 11 percent year over year.
Recycling now makes up about 2.7 percent of Waste Connections’ revenue.