ExxonMobil posts mixed Q4 2021 financial results

ExxonMobil posts mixed Q4  2021 financial results

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Exxon Mobil Corporation, the world's petrochemical major, has reported Q4 FY 2021 earnings that were mixed, according to Investopedia.

Adjusted earnings per share (EPS) came in at USD2.05, above what analysts had forecast for the quarter and climbing to the highest levels in at least four years. However, Exxon's revenue gains, while substantial, came up short compared to predictions. Analysts had expected the company's revenue to roughly double to USD90.8 billion amid recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Exxon's revenue instead climbed by 82.6% year over year to USD85.0 billion. Additionally, the company posted its highest cash flow from operating activities since 2012, indicating a robust recovery process.

Investors look to the key metric of net income for ExxonMobil's upstream segment, which is one of the company's three main business segments and a strong indicator of its overall success. Upstream operations are involved in the exploration and development of oil and natural gas properties as well as the extraction and production of crude oil and natural gas. ExxonMobil's upstream segment generated USD6.1 billion in net income for Q4 FY 2021, slightly below the predicted USD6.2 billion for the quarter but the best performance in this area since Q4 FY 2019.21

ExxonMobil shares fell by about 0.8% in extended hours trading immediately following the earnings release but quickly recovered. The company's stock has consistently outperformed the market in the past year and has dramatically widened that gap with a strong rally early in 2022. As of Feb. 1, 2022, ExxonMobil shares have provided a one-year trailing total return of 83.1%, well ahead of 19.6% for the S&P 500.3 In its Q4 FY 2021 earnings statement, ExxonMobil did not provide forward guidance.

Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Kathy Mikells said during a conference call that the increase in cash flow will allow ExxonMobil to accelerate the schedule for the company's planned 10 billion share buyback. The plan initially was announced as taking place over two years. Now, the company expects the buybacks to be “faster than that 12-24 month pace,” Mikells said.

As MRC reported before, earlier this month, ExxonMobil and SABIC successful started up Gulf Coast Growth Ventures world-scale manufacturing facility in San Patricio County, Texas. The new facility will produce materials used in packaging, agricultural film, construction materials, clothing, and automotive coolants. The operation includes a 1.8 MM metric tpy ethane steam cracker, two polyethylene (PE) units capable of producing up to 1.3 MM metric tpy, and a monoethylene glycol (MEG) unit with a capacity of 1.1 MM metric tpy.

Ethylene and propylene are the main feedstocks for the production of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), respectively.

According to MRC''s ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 2,265,290 tonnes in the first eleven months of 2021, up by 14% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market were 1,363,850 tonnes in January-November, 2021, up by 25% year on year. Supply of homopolymer PP and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas supply of injection moulding PP random copolymers decreased significantly.

ExxonMobil is the largest non-government owned company in the energy industry and produces about 3% of the world's oil and about 2% of the world's energy.

Westlake completes acquisition of Hexion epoxy business

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Westlake Chemical Corporation has announced that it has completed the acquisition of Hexion Inc.’s global epoxy business for approximately USD1.2 billion in an all-cash transaction, as per the company's press release.

Based in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, the epoxy business, which will be branded as Westlake Epoxy, is an industry leader in the manufacture and development of specialty resins, coatings and composites for a variety of industries, including high-growth and sustainability-oriented end-uses such as wind turbine blades and light-weight automotive structural components.

"With this transaction, Westlake will significantly expand its integrated business by adding a leading downstream portfolio of coatings and composite products," said Westlake President and Chief Executive Officer Albert Chao. "Light-weighting is a critical feature for the manufacture of structural components for automobiles and for renewable energy, particularly the composite blades used by wind turbines, and epoxies are key ingredients for these sustainable products. The industries served by Westlake Epoxy are very attractive and the business is expected to be a synergistic addition to Westlake’s existing businesses. We welcome the epoxy employees to the Westlake family and look forward to realizing the tremendous opportunities to grow the combined businesses."

Westlake Epoxy is a global leading producer of epoxy resins, modifiers and curing agents for high-performance materials, coatings and composites. The fully-integrated business includes upstream base epoxy resins and intermediates delivered as liquid or solid epoxy resins, as well downstream specialty epoxy resins used in coatings and composites. Westlake Epoxy serves numerous industries, including adhesives; aerospace; automotive; civil engineering and construction; composite and wind energy; electronics; electrical laminates; as well as marine and protective coatings.

As MRC reported before, in 2021, Hexion Inc., a major American manufacturer of phenol and bisphenol A (BPA), has recently announced that in order to help address climate change, it has committed to reduce absolute carbon emissions by 20% by 2030.

Hexion Inc., formerly Momentive Specialty Chemicals Inc., is a chemical company based in Columbus, Ohio. It manufactures thermosetting resins and related technologies and specialty products. Hexion has two divisions: the epoxy, phenolic and coating resins division and the forest products division.

Westlake Chemical Corporation is an international manufacturer and supplier of petrochemicals, polymers and building products with headquarters in Houston, Texas. The company's range of products includes: ethylene, polyethylene, styrene, propylene, chlor-alkali and derivative products, PVC suspension and specialty resins, PVC Compounds, and PVC building products including siding, pipe, fittings and specialty components, windows, fence, deck and film.

INEOS Styrolution started ABS production in France

INEOS Styrolution started ABS production in France

MOSCOW (MRC) -- INEOS Styrolution (Frankfurt, Germany) announced the start of ABS ((acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) production in Wingles, France, having completed the conversion of an existing polystyrene line to the production of ABS, said the company.

This move makes Wingles the company’s third ABS production site in Europe together with Antwerp, Belgium and Cologne, Germany. The ABS production capacity in Wingles will be 50,000 metric tons per year (m.t./yr), to help meet the increased demand for ABS in Europe in industries such as Construction, Compounding, Household and Automotive.

Dr. Alexander Gluck, President EMEA, comments: "The new ABS plant in Wingles not only increases our overall ABS capacity in Europe, but it also allows us to provide new ABS solutions to respond to developing customer demand across a broader portfolio."

The sites in Antwerp, Belgium and Wingles, France address the production of INEOS Styrolution’s standard ABS solutions (Terluran and Lustran brands), while Cologne, Germany, is focused on the production of specialty ABS solutions (Novodur brand).

The new ABS production line adds to the portfolio produced in Wingles with the site continuing to produce polystyrene for industries including Construction and Packaging.

As MRC reported earlier, in August 2021, INEOS Styrolution joined the US Plastics Pact in their support for collaborative, solution-driven initiatives intended to drive significant system change in the design, use, and reuse of plastics. The US Plastic Pact unites cross-sector approaches, setting a national strategy, and creating scalable solutions to create a path forward toward a circular economy for plastics in the United States by 2025.

We remind that in April 2021, INEOS Styrolution, Recycling Technologies and Trinseo announced that they had reached a significant milestone in their plans to build commercial polystyrene (PS) recycling plants in Europe. Recycling Technologies has been selected as the technology partner.

INEOS Styrolution is the leading global styrenics supplier, with a focus on styrene monomer, polystyrene, ABS Standard and styrenic specialties. With world-class production facilities and more than 90 years of experience, INEOS Styrolution helps its customers succeed by offering solutions, designed to give them a competitive edge in their markets. At the same time, these innovative and sustainable best-in-class solutions help make the circular economy for styrenics a reality. The company provides styrenic applications for many everyday products across a broad range of industries, including automotive, electronics, household, construction, healthcare, packaging and toys/sports/leisure. In 2020, sales were at 4 billion euros. INEOS Styrolution employs approximately 3,600 people and operates 20 production sites in ten countries.

Mexico may cut crude oil exports to Europe, and Asia after new refinery starts

Mexico may cut crude oil exports to Europe, and Asia after new refinery starts

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Mexico's state-run Petroleos Mexicanos would likely reduce oil sales to Europe and Asia before the United States, its main market for oil exports, after its Dos Bocas refinery begins operations, a Valero Energy Corp VLO.N executive said on Thursday.

Pemex in December said its crude exports will fall to 435,000 bpd this year from 1.019 million bpd in 2021 and it plans to cease all crude exports after its 300,000-barrel-per-day Dos Bocas refinery in the southeastern state of Tabasco begins processing crude next year.

Pemex was not immediately available to respond to the Valero executive's comments.

Analysts expect that the exports decline - which has not yet been included in the budget Mexico's congress approved for 2022 - would primarily affect customers that buy Mexican crude on the spot market, including many in Asia.

"It looks like their (Pemex) goals are pretty aggressive," said Gary Simmons, Valero's chief commercial officer, during the firm's fourth quarter earnings call on Thursday.

The Texas-based refining company, which is among the US top importers of heavy crude, expects to continue its business relationship with Pemex, he added.

Pemex also plans to reshuffle fuel imports after buying Shell's 50%-stake in the Deer Park refinery in Texas, which will give it access to up to 230,000 bpd of US fuels.

As MRC wrote before, Mexico carried out the transaction as agreed: USD596 MM for the refinery's assets - equivalent to Shell's 50% stake in the JV's debt - as well as the liquidation of the USD596 MM that made up Pemex's stake in the refinery.

Ethylene and propylene are the main feedstocks for the production of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), respectively.

According to MR''s ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 2,265,290 tonnes in the first eleven months of 2021, up by 14% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market were 1,363,850 tonnes in January-November, 2021, up by 25% year on year. Supply of homopolymer PP and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas supply of injection moulding PP random copolymers decreased significantly.

Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) is a Mexican state-owned oil and gas and petrochemical company. Since the nationalization of the Mexican oil industry in 1938, Pemex has remained a state-owned company and, by law, has exclusive rights to explore and produce oil in the country. Almost 60% of the company's revenues go to the state budget. Petrochemical products include, but are not limited to, polyethylene, polyvinyl chloride.

Alpek to acquire PET laminate producer Octal

Alpek to acquire PET laminate producer Octal

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Mexican petrochemical company Alpek has signed an agreement to acquire international PET laminate producer Octal Holding for USD620 mln, said Reuters.

The financing for the acquisition will be covered through cash available on Alpek’s balance sheet, funds from its existing businesses and bank loans, and was made possible in part by the strength of its 2021 results, Alpek said.

"This transaction is ideal for Alpek. Through a single acquisition we get access to the growing and profitable segment of PET laminate," Alpek Chief Executive Officer Jose de Jesus Valdez said in a statement.

Octal serves customers in the Americas, the Middle East and Europe from its logistics center in Oman. It owns direct-to-sheet (DPET) technology, which eliminates several energy-intensive conversion steps, resulting in lower production costs.

The acquisition will add more than 1 million tonnes to Alpek’s capacity, the company said.

As per MRC, the polyethylene terephthalate (PET) manufacturing facility, formerly known as Lotte Chemical UK in the UK, is now owned by a subsidiary of Alpek and operates under the name Alpek Polyester UK Ltd. The deal, announced in October, includes a 350,000 tpa PET plant in Wilton. This is Alpek's first acquisition outside of America. The agreement entered into force on 1 January, 2020.

We remind, Alpek (Monterrey, Mexico) finished commissioning and begin production at a Reading, Pennsylvania, recycled polyethylene therephthalate (PET) facility in the third quarter of 2021. DAK Americas, Alpek's US subsidiary, bought the facility in late-May for USD98.1 million at an auction in the bankruptcy case of California recycled PET producer CarbonLite.

Alpek operates two main business segments, focused on polyester, and plastics and chemicals, and is a leading producer of purified terephthalic acid (PTA) and polyethylene terephthalate (PET). It is also the largest EPS manufacturer in the Americas.