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Sylvamo Releases First-Quarter 2022 Results

May 11, 2022

Sylvamo (NYSE: SLVM), the world’s paper company, is releasing first-quarter 2022 earnings.

Message from the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer

  • “We generated strong earnings and free cash flow,” said Jean-Michel Ribiéras. “We expect we will continue that trend and achieve pre-pandemic earnings levels, even excluding our Russian business. We have the right team to continue to service our customers and navigate input cost inflation and supply chain hurdles.”

First-Quarter Highlights

  • Net income of $26 million ($0.59 per diluted share) compared with $62 million ($1.41 per diluted share) in the fourth quarter of 2021; first quarter 2022 net income includes the impact of a $68 million ($57 million, net of tax) impairment charge for our Russian operations as we evaluate options to exit the business
  • Adjusted operating earnings1 (non-GAAP) of $87 million ($1.97 per diluted share) compared with $75 million ($1.71 per diluted share) in the fourth quarter of 2021
  • Adjusted EBITDA2 (non-GAAP) of $187 million (19.1% margin) compared with $170 million (17.5% margin) in the fourth quarter of 2021
  • Free cash flow3 (non-GAAP) of $73 million compared with $162 million in the fourth quarter of 2021
  • All reported results for the first quarter of 2022 include our Russia operations

First-Quarter Commercial and Operational Highlights

  • Price and mix improved by $53 million versus the prior quarter and volume decreased by $17 million due to slower seasonal demand in Eastern Europe and Latin America, while order backlogs remain strong
  • Operations and costs increased by $22 million and total maintenance outage expenses decreased by $26 million versus the prior quarter, reflecting fewer planned maintenance outages
  • Input and transportation costs increased by $24 million versus the prior quarter, reflecting higher costs for wood, energy, chemicals and distribution
  • Adjusted EBITDA margins for Europe, Latin America and North America were 16%, 27% and 17%, respectively
  • Repaid $33 million of debt, achieving a gross debt-to-adjusted EBITDA ratio of 2.1x

Second-Quarter Outlook

  • Price and mix are expected to improve by $60 million to $65 million ($50 million to $55 million, excluding Russia), compared to the first quarter, reflecting continued realization of prior price increases in all regions
  • Volume is expected to decrease $10 million to $15 million (remain stable, excluding Russia), with seasonally stronger Latin American volume offsetting more maintenance outages in North America
  • Operations and costs are expected to increase by $10 million to $15 million ($5 million to $10 million, excluding Russia), due to other costs
  • Input and transportation costs are projected to increase by $15 million to $20 million ($10 million to $15 million, excluding Russia), mainly due to higher prices of natural gas in North America and rising diesel costs affecting fiber delivery in Latin America
  • Total maintenance outage expenses are projected to increase by $25 million ($15 million, excluding Russia), as we conduct more planned maintenance outages
  • We also project $8 million in costs related to transition service agreements in the quarter and $15 million of one-time costs (transition service agreements costs are not included in adjusted EBITDA, and one-time costs are not included in adjusted EBITDA and adjusted operating earnings)

Management Summary

We continue to execute our three-prong strategy of commercial excellence, operational excellence and financial discipline. This approach generated a 19.1% adjusted EBITDA margin in the first quarter of 2022.

Global demand continues to strengthen in most regions as schools and offices reopen. As a result, our volumes remain strong, running at full capacity in all three regions. We also continue to realize the benefit of prior price increases, which allowed price and mix to outpace input cost increases.

Our facilities operated well in a challenging supply chain environment, navigating input cost inflation and supply chain hurdles. Most importantly, we continue taking care of each other and our customers.

This strategy generated $73 million in free cash flow, enabling us to pay down $33 million in debt and increase our cash position by $49 million.

We believe Sylvamo will continue creating value as we work to achieve our vision of being the employer, supplier and investment of choice. We are currently on a path to generate between $725 million and $775 million in adjusted EBITDA and $160 million and $180 million in free cash flow this year, excluding Russia for the full year.

Our path forward in Russia is driven by our primary value to always do the right things in the right ways for the right reasons. We have made the decision to exit Russia. We will do so in an orderly manner and are conducting a process to sell our Russian business. We are working to reach an agreement and plan to complete this process promptly, including obtaining approval from our board, as well as the required government approvals to execute a transaction.

We would not be in this position without our team members who continue overcoming challenges while remaining focused on serving customers and taking care of themselves and their teammates. We appreciate them for everything they do each day.

1

Adjusted Operating Earnings (non-GAAP) are net earnings (GAAP) excluding net special items. Management uses this measure to focus on ongoing operations and believes it is useful to investors because it enables them to perform meaningful comparisons of past and present combined operating results. The Company believes that using this information, along with net income, provides for a more complete analysis of the results of operations by quarter. Net income is the most directly comparable GAAP measure. For more information regarding net special items, see the information under the heading Effects of Net Special Items and the Condensed Consolidated and Combined Statement of Operations and related notes included later in this release.

2

Adjusted EBITDA (non-GAAP) is net income (GAAP) plus the sum of income taxes, net interest (income) expense, depreciation, amortization and cost of timber harvested, transition service agreement expense, stock-based compensation, and, when applicable for the periods reported, net special items. Management uses this measure in managing the operating performance of our business and believes that Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA Margin provide investors and analysts meaningful insights into our operating performance and Adjusted EBITDA is a relevant metric for the third-party debt. The Company believes that using this information, along with net income, provides for a more complete analysis of the results of its operations. Net income is the most directly comparable GAAP measure. For more information regarding net special items, see the information under the heading Effects of Net Special Items and the Condensed Consolidated and Combined Statement of Operations and related notes included later in this release.

3

Free Cash Flow is a non-GAAP measure and the most directly comparable GAAP measure is cash provided by operations. Management utilizes this measure in connection with managing our business and believes that Free Cash Flow is useful to investors as a liquidity measure because it measures the amount of cash generated that is available, after reinvesting in the business, to maintain a strong balance sheet and service debt, and return cash to shareowners in the future. It should not be inferred that the entire Free Cash Flow amount is available for discretionary expenditures. Free Cash Flow also enables investors to perform meaningful comparisons between past and present periods.

Select Financial Measures

(In millions)

First
Quarter
2022

 

Fourth
Quarter
2021

 

First
Quarter
2021

Net Sales

$

977

 

$

972

 

$

778

Net Income

 

26

 

 

62

 

 

62

Business Segment Operating Profit

 

141

 

 

123

 

 

84

Adjusted Operating Earnings

 

87

 

 

75

 

 

62

Adjusted EBITDA

 

187

 

 

170

 

 

123

Cash Provided By Operating Activities

 

92

 

 

184

 

 

82

Free Cash Flow

 

73

 

 

162

 

 

65

Segment Information

Sylvamo uses business segment operating profits to measure the earnings performance of its businesses and is calculated as set forth in footnote (c) under the "Sales and Earnings by Business Segment" table (page 8). First-quarter 2022 net sales by business segment and operating profit by business segment compared with the fourth quarter of 2021 and the first quarter of 2021 are as follows:

 

Business Segment Results

(In millions)

First
Quarter
2022

 

Fourth
Quarter
2021

 

First
Quarter
2021

Net Sales by Business Segment

 

 

 

 

 

Europe

$

279

 

 

$

297

 

 

$

238

 

Latin America

 

215

 

 

 

229

 

 

 

168

 

North America

 

508

 

 

 

463

 

 

 

382

 

Inter-segment Sales

 

(25

)

 

 

(17

)

 

 

(10

)

Net Sales

$

977

 

 

$

972

 

 

$

778

 

Operating Profit by Business Segment

 

 

 

 

 

Europe

$

36

 

 

$

16

 

 

$

23

 

Latin America

 

40

 

 

 

64

 

 

 

43

 

North America

 

65

 

 

 

43

 

 

 

18

 

Total Business Segment Operating Profit

$

141

 

 

$

123

 

 

$

84

 

Operating profits in the first quarter of 2022:

Europe - $36 million compared with $16 million in the fourth quarter of 2021. Earnings were higher as higher average sales prices and lower planned maintenance outages more than offset seasonally weaker demand, higher operating costs and higher input costs.

Latin America - $40 million compared with $64 million in the fourth quarter of 2021. Earnings were lower as higher average sales prices were more than offset by lower seasonal demand, higher input costs and an unfavorable foreign exchange impact.

North America - $65 million compared with $43 million in the fourth quarter of 2021. Earnings were higher as higher average sales prices, higher volumes and lower maintenance outages more than offset higher input costs.

Earnings Webcast

The company will host an audio webcast at 10 a.m. EST / 9 a.m. CST. All interested parties are invited to listen at investors.sylvamo.com.

Parties who wish to participate should call +1-855-982-8078 (U.S.) or +1-469-886-1931 (international). The conference ID number is 3782388. Participants should call in no later than 9:45 a.m. EST / 8:45 a.m. CST.

Replays are available at investors.sylvamo.com for one year and by phone for 90 days, approximately two hours after the call. To listen to the replay by phone, call +1-855-859-2056 and use conference ID number 3782388.

About Sylvamo

Sylvamo Corporation (NYSE: SLVM) is the world’s paper company with mills in Europe, Latin America and North America. Our vision is to be the employer, supplier and investment of choice. We transform renewable resources into papers that people depend on for education, communication and entertainment. Headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, we employ more than 7,500 colleagues. Net sales for 2021 were $3.5 billion. For more information, please visit Sylvamo.com.

Effective Tax Rate

The reported effective tax rate for the first quarter of 2022 was 50%, compared to 38% for the fourth quarter of 2021. The higher rate for the first quarter was due to the mix of earnings in the U.S. and various income tax rates in non-US jurisdictions, the impairment of the Russian assets, and an unfavorable U.S. rule change restricting foreign tax credits in certain jurisdictions.

Excluding net special items, the operational effective tax rate for the first quarter of 2022 was 31%, compared with 29% for the fourth quarter of 2021.

Effects of Net Special Items

Net special items in the first quarter of 2022 amount to a net after-tax charge of $61 million ($1.38 per diluted share) compared with net after-tax charge of $13 million ($0.30 per diluted share) in the fourth quarter of 2021. For more information see the information under the Condensed Consolidated and Combined Statement of Operations and related notes included later in this release.

Forward-Looking Statements

This news release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, including the statement concerting expected earnings levels, the information under the heading “Second-Quarter Outlook” and expectations stated under the heading “Management Summary.” Any or all forward-looking statements may turn out to be incorrect, and our actual actions and results could differ materially from what they express or imply, because they involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, many of which are beyond our control. These risks, uncertainties, and other factors include those disclosed in the heading “Risk Factors” in our Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and in our subsequent filings with the SEC, available on our website, Sylvamo.com. These forward-looking statements reflect our current expectations, and we undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

 

SYLVAMO CORPORATION

Condensed Consolidated and Combined Statement of Operations

Preliminary and Unaudited

(In millions)

 

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 

Three Months
Ended
December 31,
2021

 

 

2022

 

2021

 

 

Net Sales

$

977

 

$

778

 

$

972

 

Costs and Expenses

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cost of products sold

 

649

(a)

 

525

 

 

678

(d)

Selling and administrative expenses

 

67

(b)

 

41

 

 

67

 

Depreciation, amortization and cost of timber harvested

 

34

 

 

36

 

 

35

 

Distribution expenses

 

85

 

 

85

 

 

70

 

Taxes other than payroll and income taxes

 

6

 

 

7

 

 

5

 

Impairment of business

 

68

(c)

 

 

 

 

Interest (income) expense, net

 

16

 

 

 

 

17

(e)

Income Before Income Taxes

 

52

 

 

84

 

 

100

 

Income tax provision

 

26

 

 

22

 

 

38

 

Net Income

$

26

 

$

62

 

$

62

 

Earnings Per Share - Basic

$

0.59

 

$

1.41

 

$

1.41

 

Earnings Per Share - Diluted

$

0.59

 

$

1.41

 

$

1.41

 

Average Shares of Common Stock Outstanding - Diluted

 

44

 

 

44

 

 

44

 

The accompanying notes are an integral part of this condensed consolidated and combined statement of operations.

Three Months Ended March 31, 2022

 

(a) Includes pre-tax loss of $2 million ($2 million after taxes) for one-time costs associated with the spin-off.

 

(b) Includes pre-tax loss of $3 million ($2 million after taxes) for one-time costs associated with the spin-off.

 

(c) Pre-tax charge of $68 million ($57 million after taxes) related to the impairment of our Russian fixed assets.

 

Three Months Ended December 31, 2021

 

(d) Includes pre-tax loss of $6 million ($4 million after taxes) for one-time costs associated with the spin-off.

 

(e) Includes $9 million of tax expense related to establishing a valuation allowance on France deferred tax assets.

At the date of distribution of Sylvamo common shares by International Paper to its shareholders on Oct. 1, 2021, Sylvamo had 43,949,277 total common shares outstanding. The calculation of earnings per share utilizes the number of shares of common stock outstanding at the date of distribution as the basis for the calculation of the weighted average number of shares of common stock outstanding for periods presented prior to the spinoff because, at that time, Sylvamo did not operate as a separate, stand-alone entity, and no shares or equity-based awards were outstanding prior to the date of distribution.

 

SYLVAMO CORPORATION

Reconciliation of Net Income to Adjusted Operating Earnings

Preliminary and Unaudited

(In millions, except per share amounts)

 

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 

Three Months
Ended
December 31,
2021

 

2022

 

2021

 

Net Income

$

26

 

$

62

 

$

62

Add back: Net special items expense (income)

 

61

 

 

 

 

13

Adjusted Operating Earnings

$

87

 

$

62

 

$

75

 

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 

Three Months
Ended
December 31,
2021

 

2022

 

2021

 

Diluted Earnings per Common Share as Reported

$

0.59

 

$

1.41

 

$

1.41

Add back: Net special items expense (income)

 

1.38

 

 

 

 

0.30

Adjusted Operating Earnings per Share

$

1.97

 

$

1.41

 

$

1.71

Reconciliation of Net Income to Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA Margin

Preliminary and Unaudited

(In millions)

 

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 

Three Months
Ended

December 31,
2021

 

2022

 

2021

 

Net Income

$

26

 

 

$

62

 

 

$

62

 

Adjustments:

 

 

 

 

 

Income tax provision

 

26

 

 

 

22

 

 

 

38

 

Interest (income) expense, net

 

16

 

 

 

 

 

 

17

 

Depreciation, amortization and cost of timber harvested

 

34

 

 

 

36

 

 

 

35

 

Stock-based compensation

 

4

 

 

 

3

 

 

 

4

 

Transition service agreement expense

 

8

 

 

 

 

 

 

8

 

Net special items expense (income)

 

73

 

 

 

 

 

 

6

 

Adjusted EBITDA

$

187

 

 

$

123

 

 

$

170

 

Net Sales

$

977

 

 

$

778

 

 

$

972

 

Adjusted EBITDA Margin

 

19.1

%

 

 

15.8

%

 

 

17.5

%

Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA Margin by Business Segment

 

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 

Three Months
Ended
December 31,
2021

 

2022

 

2021

 

Adjusted EBITDA

 

 

 

 

 

Europe

$

46

 

 

$

32

 

 

$

27

 

Latin America

 

57

 

 

 

57

 

 

 

81

 

North America

 

84

 

 

 

34

 

 

 

62

 

Total Business Segment Adjusted EBITDA

$

187

 

 

$

123

 

 

$

170

 

Net Sales (excluding Inter-segment Sales)

 

 

 

 

 

Europe

$

279

 

 

$

238

 

 

$

297

 

Latin America

 

215

 

 

 

168

 

 

 

229

 

North America

 

508

 

 

 

382

 

 

 

463

 

Total Business Segment Net Sales

$

1,002

 

 

$

788

 

 

$

989

 

Adjusted EBITDA Margin

 

 

 

 

 

Europe

 

16

%

 

 

13

%

 

 

9

%

Latin America

 

27

%

 

 

34

%

 

 

35

%

North America

 

17

%

 

 

9

%

 

 

13

%

SYLVAMO CORPORATION

Sales and Earnings by Business Segment

Preliminary and Unaudited

(In millions)

Net Sales by Business Segment

 

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 

Three Months
Ended
December 31,
2021

 

2022

 

2021

 

Europe

$

279

 

 

$

238

 

 

$

297

 

Latin America

 

215

 

 

 

168

 

 

 

229

 

North America

 

508

 

 

 

382

 

 

 

463

 

Inter-segment Sales

 

(25

)

 

 

(10

)

 

 

(17

)

Net Sales

$

977

 

 

$

778

 

 

$

972

 

Operating Profit by Business Segment

 

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 

Three Months
Ended
December 31,
2021

 

 

2022

 

2021

 

 

Europe

$

36

 

$

23

 

$

16

 

Latin America

 

40

 

 

43

 

 

64

 

North America

 

65

 

 

18

 

 

43

 

Total Business Segment Operating Profit

$

141

 

$

84

 

$

123

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Income Before Income Taxes

$

52

 

$

84

 

$

100

 

Interest (income) expense, net

 

16

 

 

 

 

17

 

Net special items expense (income)

 

73

(a)

 

 

 

6

(b)

Business Segment Operating Profit (c)

$

141

 

$

84

 

$

123

 

Three Months Ended March 31, 2022

 

(a)

Includes a pre-tax charge $68 million ($57 million after taxes) related to the impairment of our Russian fixed assets and a pre-tax loss of $5 million ($4 million after taxes) for one-time costs associated with the spin-off.

 
Three Months Ended December 31, 2021
 
(b)

Includes pre-tax loss of $6 million ($4 million after taxes) for one-time costs associated with the spin-off.

 
(c)

As set forth in the chart above, business segment operating profit is defined as income before income taxes, but excluding net interest (income) expense and net special items. Business segment operating profit is a measure reported to our management for purposes of making decisions about allocating resources to our business segments and assessing the performance of our business segments.

SYLVAMO CORPORATION

Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheet

(In millions)

 

March 31,
2022

 

December 31,
2021

 

(Preliminary
and
Unaudited)

 

 

Assets

 

 

 

Current Assets

 

 

 

Cash and temporary investments

$

229

 

 

$

180

 

Accounts and notes receivable, net

 

483

 

 

 

490

 

Contract assets

 

29

 

 

 

29

 

Inventories

 

376

 

 

 

342

 

Other current assets

 

56

 

 

 

67

 

Total Current Assets

 

1,173

 

 

 

1,108

 

Plants, Properties and Equipment, Net

 

816

 

 

 

885

 

Forestlands

 

330

 

 

 

278

 

Goodwill

 

151

 

 

 

132

 

Right of Use Assets

 

43

 

 

 

41

 

Deferred Charges and Other Assets

 

196

 

 

 

153

 

Total Assets

$

2,709

 

 

$

2,597

 

Liabilities and Equity

 

 

 

Current Liabilities

 

 

 

Accounts payable

$

435

 

 

$

445

 

Notes payable and current maturities of long-term debt

 

25

 

 

 

42

 

Accrued payroll and benefits

 

46

 

 

 

51

 

Other current liabilities

 

181

 

 

 

220

 

Total Current Liabilities

 

687

 

 

 

758

 

Long-Term Debt

 

1,341

 

 

 

1,358

 

Deferred Income Taxes

 

205

 

 

 

169

 

Other Liabilities

 

145

 

 

 

130

 

Equity

 

 

 

Common stock, $1 par value, 200.0 share authorized, 44.1 shares and 43.9 shares issued and outstanding at March 31, 2022 and December 31, 2021, respectively

 

44

 

 

 

44

 

Paid-In Capital

 

8

 

 

 

4

 

Retained Earnings

 

1,961

 

 

 

1,935

 

Accumulated Other Comprehensive Loss

 

(1,680

)

 

 

(1,801

)

 

 

333

 

 

 

182

 

Less: Common stock held in treasury, at cost, 0.1 shares and 0.0 shares at March 31, 2022 and December 31, 2021, respectively

 

(2

)

 

 

 

Total Equity

 

331

 

 

 

182

 

Total Liabilities and Equity

$

2,709

 

 

$

2,597

 

SYLVAMO CORPORATION

Condensed Consolidated and Combined Statement of Cash Flows

Preliminary and Unaudited

(In millions)

 

Three Months Ended March 31,

 

2022

 

2021

Operating Activities

 

 

 

Net income

$

26

 

 

$

62

 

Depreciation, amortization and cost of timber harvested

 

34

 

 

 

36

 

Deferred income tax provision (benefit), net

 

(4

)

 

 

12

 

Stock-based compensation

 

4

 

 

 

3

 

Impairment of business

 

68

 

 

 

 

Changes in operating assets and liabilities and other

 

 

 

Accounts and notes receivable

 

30

 

 

 

(16

)

Inventories

 

(31

)

 

 

2

 

Accounts payable and accrued liabilities

 

(56

)

 

 

10

 

Other

 

21

 

 

 

(27

)

Cash Provided By Operating Activities

 

92

 

 

 

82

 

Investment Activities

 

 

 

Invested in capital projects

 

(19

)

 

 

(17

)

Cash pool arrangements with Parent

 

 

 

 

(11

)

Other

 

 

 

 

5

 

Cash Used For Investment Activities

 

(19

)

 

 

(23

)

Financing Activities

 

 

 

Net transfers from Parent

 

 

 

 

79

 

Reduction of debt

 

(35

)

 

 

(3

)

Other

 

(4

)

 

 

 

Cash Provided By (Used for) Financing Activities

 

(39

)

 

 

76

 

Effect of Exchange Rate Changes on Cash

 

15

 

 

 

(61

)

Change in Cash and Temporary Investments

 

49

 

 

 

74

 

Cash and Temporary Investments

 

 

 

Beginning of the period

 

180

 

 

 

95

 

End of the period

$

229

 

 

$

169

 

SYLVAMO CORPORATION

Reconciliation of Cash Provided by Operations to Free Cash Flow

Preliminary and Unaudited

(In millions)

 

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 

Three Months
Ended
December 31,
2021

 

2022

 

2021

 

Cash Provided By Operating Activities

$

92

 

 

$

82

 

 

$

184

 

Adjustments:

 

 

 

 

 

Cash invested in capital projects

 

(19

)

 

 

(17

)

 

 

(22

)

Free Cash Flow

$

73

 

 

$

65

 

 

$

162

 

Reconciliation of Net Income to Adjusted EBITDA - 2022 Full Year Outlook

Estimates

(In millions)

 

Twelve Months Ended
December 31,
2022

 

Net Income

$267 - $302

Adjustments:

 

Income tax provision

120 - 135

Interest (income) expense, net

67

Depreciation, amortization and cost of timber harvested

130

Stock-based compensation

16

Transition service agreement expense

25

Net Special items expense (income)

100

Adjusted EBITDA

$725 - $775

Reconciliation of Cash Provided by Operations to Free Cash Flow - 2022 Full Year Outlook

Estimates

(In millions)

 

Twelve Months Ended
December 31,
2022

 

Cash Provided By Operating Activities

$335 - $355

Adjustments:

 

Cash invested in capital projects

(175)

Free Cash Flow

$160 - $180

The non-GAAP financial measures presented in this release have limitations as analytical tools and should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for an analysis of our results calculated in accordance with GAAP. In addition, because not all companies use identical calculations, the Company’s presentation of non-GAAP measures in this release may not be comparable to similarly titled measures disclosed by other companies, including companies in the same industry as Sylvamo.

Management believes certain non-U.S. GAAP financial measures, when used in conjunction with information presented in accordance with U.S. GAAP, can facilitate a better understanding of the impact of various factors and trends on the Company’s financial condition and results of operations. Management also uses these non-U.S. GAAP financial measures in making financial, operating and planning decisions and in evaluating the Company’s performance.

Investor Contact: Hans Bjorkman, 901-419-3525, hans.bjorkman@sylvamo.com
Media Contact: Adam Ghassemi, 901-419-4436, adam.ghassemi@sylvamo.com

Source: Sylvamo

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