ALRO S.A. is listed on the Bucharest stock exchange in the premium category. In 2018 it was one of the most profitable companies in Romania, with a net profit of 84 million euros ($93 million), up 39 percent from 2017. “We are a competitive company, and 2018 was very good to us,” says Gheorghe Dobra, CEO of ALRO. “In the EU, aluminum consumption outpaced production, and that has kept prices at a good level.”
The plant uses a full 5 percent of Romania’s electricity production to manufacture aluminum primary products such as wire rod, billets and slabs and semi-fabricated products as plates, sheets, coils, strips and profiles. Through various innovations and development, ALRO has created a product mix that caters to the needs of more than 300 customers in the cables and conductors, construction, automotive, aircraft and engineering markets around the world.
SKF totally changed our approach to maintenance.
Gheorghe Dobra, CEO, ALRO
“With our recent achievements in cost control to reach operational efficiency, together with aggressive capacity-increasing programs in production, we’ve achieved in 2018 a production of 210,000 [metric] tons [232,000 U.S. tons] of primary aluminum, 283,000 tons [312,000 U.S. tons] of cast aluminum, 31,000 tons [34,000 U.S. tons] of recycled aluminum and 105,000 tons [116,000 U.S. tons] of processed aluminum products (extruded profiles included), high-value-added products, with the hope of reaching 120,000 tons [132,000 U.S. tons] of processed aluminum by 2021,” Dobra says.
Aluminum is the 13th element in the periodic table and makes up more than 8 percent of the mass of the Earth’s crust. But pure aluminum does not exist in nature. It was first isolated by the Danish physicist Christian Oersted in the 19th century when he applied electrolytic reduction to various aluminum-rich minerals. Today, aluminum is primarily produced from alumina, which in turn is obtained from bauxite, a clay-like mineral mostly mined in the tropics. Four to five tons of bauxite are needed to produce one ton of aluminum.