8.11 BTP fiscal 1997: group review.

Press Release

BTP Group sales increased by 3% to £ 404 M in fiscal 1997 (year ended 31 Mar 1997) giving an operating profit increase of 7% to £ 50 M. After a strong 1H, the 2H progressed more slowly held back by the immediate effects of currency changes. The Biocides & Fine Chemicals Division increased sales by 13% to £ 151 M and operating profit by 8% to £28.6 M with another strong year on most fronts. The figures and comparisions are adjusted for the transfer of the Rock Hill site from Performance Chemicals into this Division in the 2H. Performance Chemicals increased sales by 18% to £ 79 M and operating profit decreased 16% to £6.5M. The 2H figures are adjusted for the transfer out of the Rock Hill and Australian PCA businesses. Good volume increases were offset by lower selling prices and currency effects. Adhesives & Textile Coatings increased operating profits by 39% to £ 5.3 M on sales, which, due to the closure of the US West Coast facility, decreased by 4% to £108 M. Improved raw material pricing and rationalisation benefits contributed to increased profits. A further £0.6 m of rationalisation costs were incurred in the year. The Safety Equipment Division showed an operating profit increase of 18% to £ 9.4 M on flat sales of £ 61 M.

8.10 Rohm and Haas: 1Q 1997 Results.

Press Release

Earnings of $104 M in the 1Q of 1997 were up 4% from last year's strong 1Q results of $100 M. Though volume increased by 7%, sales of $986 M were down 1% from last year's sales of $994 M because of weaker currencies in Europe and Japan, 2% lower selling prices, lower-priced product mix and the formation of the RohMax joint venture. Polymers, Resins and Monomers (PRM) earnings were $63 M, up 17% compared to the prior year. Excluding the Petroleum Chemicals business, now accounted for through the RohMax joint venture, sales were up 7%, reflecting 13% higher volume offset by lower selling prices and weaker currencies in both Europe and Japan. Polymers and Resins had strong volume increases in all regions. The earnings increase is primarily due to higher volume. Performance Chemicals recorded earnings of $21 M, down from last year's earnings of $24 M. Sales decreased 3% and volume was down 5%. The volume decline was primarily in Biocides due to the discontinuation of the joint venture with Dead Sea Bromine. Plastics reported earnings of $16 M, up 14% from the 1996 period. Sales increased 1%, reflecting 11% higher volume offset by lower selling prices and weaker European currencies. Volume gains were in North America and Europe. The earnings increase primarily resulted from break-even results for AtoHaas Europe compared to losses in 1996. Agricultural Chemicals earnings of $19 M were 5% lower than the prior year period. Though volume was up 1%, sales of $140 M were 5% lower than 1996. The sales and earnings decrease was attributable to weaker currencies in Europe and Japan and a lower-priced product mix. Volume increased due to higher shipments of Dithane in Latin America. Net sales were $986 M, down 1% from 1996. The 1Q gross profit margin was 37%, unchanged from the prior year period. Selling prices were down 2% and currency fluctuations were unfavourable, but were partially offset by 2% lower raw material prices and higher volume.

1.29 Dow Stretches Latex

Chemical Week, September 1997

Dow Chemical affiliate Dow Suomi Oy (Helsinki) has spend FM 30 million ($ 5.54 million) to double capacity to 140,000 tonnes per year of styrene butadiene latex in Hamina, Finland. "The plant’s production is used in coating paper for better printability and for strength as a pigment binding agent. Finland is the biggest market for paper latex in Europe and the production of coated paper is increasing" says Harry Winkberg, Dow Suomi’s European sales manager

1.28 Courtaulds in Brazil

Speciality Chemicals, September 1997

Currently Courtaulds Coatings produces 900,000 litres of paint in Brazil at its three plants: at Sao Goncalo (Rio de Janeiro), Cajamar (Sao Paolo) and Sao Roque (Sao Paolo). The company's Brazilian sales reached $100 M in 1996 and are predicted to rise to $130 M in 1997. Meanwhile, Courtaulds is to decide on the size of its planned investment, possibly ranging between $35 M and $100 M, which will include the construction of a new paint plant.

1.27 Alcro Beckers wants Polifarb Debica complete

Performance Chemicals, September 1997

The Swedish paint producer Alcro Beckers, a member of the Wilh. Beckers Group, wants to purchase all the shares of Polifarb Debica which are still in Polish ownership, thereby becoming the sole owner of the fourth largest Polish paint producer. To do this, Alcro is prepared to pay 35% over the issuing price. Polifarb Debica posted sales of 140.8 million Zl in 1996; the net profit was 12.8 million Zl.