Sherwin-Williams Q4 earnings rise 41%

Sherwin-Williams Q4 earnings rise 41%

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sherwin-Williams’ Q4 earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose 41% year on year to USD752 mln, with sales rising at a faster pace than cost of sales, the US-based paint and coatings company said.

Sherwin-Williams reported revenue rose 9.8% to USD5.23 billion, short of forecasts. Earnings per share (EPS) of USD1.89 beat expectations.

The 320-basis point year-on-year improvement in gross margin was driven by sales growth and pricing actions, the company said. Volumes were flat, with demand strength in professional architectural and North American industrial end markets, but weakness in Europe and Asia end markets.

Sales, general and administrative expense, expressed as a percentage of sales, fell by 40 points to 29.8%.
The company saw a “modest” sequential decline in raw material costs from Q3 2022, it said.

"Sherwin-William.,delivered strong fourth quarter results compared to the same period a year ago, including high single-digit percentage sales growth, significant year-over-year gross margin improvement, expanded adjusted operating margins in all three segments, strong double-digit adjusted diluted net income per share growth and strong EBITDA growth," said CEO John Morikis.

We remind, Sherwin-Williams Company has announced an agreement to acquire Industria Chimica Adriatica (ICA), an Italian designer, manufacturer and distributor of industrial wood coatings used for kitchen cabinets, furniture and decor, building products, flooring and other specialty applications.

Cabot to invest in conductive carbon additives at Texas plant

Cabot to invest in conductive carbon additives at Texas plant

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Cabot Corporation announced that it plans to add conductive carbon additives (CCA) capacity in the United States to enhance its leadership position in the market and support the transition to electric vehicles (EVs), said the company.

Cabot plans to add conductive carbons capacity at their existing facility in Pampa, Texas, which is part of an approximately USD200 million planned investment program over the next five years focused on expanding the company’s CCA production in the United States.

The adoption of EVs plays a key role in the decarbonization of the economy, and the U.S. government has announced targeted efforts to build a domestic EV battery supply chain. As part of these efforts, federal and state governments have implemented a variety of programs in the form of grants, loans, and tax incentives. Cabot believes that many of these programs present potential funding opportunities for the company in its efforts to expand CCA production capacity in the U.S.

CCAs are an essential component of lithium-ion battery chemistry and are used to provide sufficient electrical conductivity to the active materials. Cabot has the broadest portfolio of CCAs including conductive carbons, carbon nanotubes (CNT), carbon nanostructures (CNS), and blends of CCAs to deliver optimal performance. Additionally, the company’s global footprint of manufacturing assets, technology labs and commercial resources enables regional supply security support for its customers.

Demand for critical battery materials, such as CCAs, for EV batteries is expected to continue to grow in the range of 20 to 30 percent globally over the next five years. Growth potential in the U.S. is expected to outpace global growth as penetration of EVs accelerates in the coming years. Cabot is committed to meeting the expected growing demand from its customers in the U.S. and helping to onshore critical battery components such as CCAs.

As part of its investment plans, Cabot expects to invest approximately USD75-90 million to produce 15,000 metric tons of conductive carbons annually at its existing facility in Pampa, TX. This project is expected to create approximately 75 high-quality jobs and is expected to commence operation at the end of calendar year 2025. In addition to a manufacturing plant, Cabot also operates a research and development facility and pilot plant in Pampa that focuses on developing new process technology for battery and other applications.

Cabot also intends to make additional investments to expand its U.S. manufacturing and technology footprint over the next five years with plans to invest in new CNT powder and dispersion capacity and to continue extending its portfolio of innovative products for battery applications.

We remind, Cabot, which recently pledged a net-zero emissions goal by 2050, has introduced the E2C FX9570 and E2C EX9620 products under the Engineered Elastomer Composites (E2C) product range to help reach its goal. The two novel solutions are designed to offer rubber producers options when developing products with high levels of durability in challenging operating environments. The newest composites will further support in enhancing durability and minimizing heat to benefit off-the-road tyres such as port and aircraft tyres, truck tyres used on rough surfaces, and in other industrial rubber goods exposed to high operating temperatures or harsh wear conditions.

Axalta releases fourth quarter and full year 2022 results

Axalta releases fourth quarter and full year 2022 results

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Axalta Coating Systems Ltd., a leading global coatings company, announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and full year ended December 31, 2022, said the company.

Fourth quarter net sales increased 8.7% year-over-year, including a 5.4% foreign currency headwind. The strong year-over-year growth was driven by 11.7% higher average price-mix, and 2.4% better volumes. Performance Coatings net sales increased 1.8% year-over-year, driven by constant currency growth of 10.5% in Refinish and 3.2% in Industrial. Mobility Coatings net sales increased 25.5% supported by a recovery in global auto production and continued pricing momentum.

Income from operations for Q4 2022 totaled USD109.8 million compared to USD94.7 million in Q4 2021. Net income to common shareholders was USD43.6 million, inclusive of approximately USD30 million of pre-tax charges associated with the Term Loan refinancing and restructuring charges, versus USD53.2 million in Q4 2021. Adjusted diluted earnings per share was USD0.38 compared with USD0.30 in Q4 2021. Q4 2022 benefited from robust sales growth, including significant realized pricing gains and volume improvement; however, operating income was negatively impacted by continued year-over-year variable raw material inflation and elevated logistics, energy and labor expenses. In addition, foreign currency headwinds, the Russia-Ukraine conflict and COVID-19 impacts in China represented a combined ~USD17 million headwind to income from operations in the quarter.

Chris Villavarayan, Axalta’s CEO and President, commented, "I am pleased to report fourth quarter earnings at the top of our guidance range, which reflected considerable year-over-year improvement. Strong pricing gains were realized across all end-markets and supported better year-over-year profitability. Margin recovery is a key priority for us and our second-half results showed notable progress on this front. Meanwhile, volumes again improved across the portfolio as demand for our products and services continue to outpace most end-market trends. We are exiting 2022 with strong momentum and a foundation to deliver continued progress into 2023."

Mr. Villavarayan continued, "I am thrilled to be leading the 12,000 team members of Axalta. This is an organization with an impressive legacy built on more than a century of innovation. The quality and depth of our people is impressive and I look forward to what we will accomplish together. In the months ahead my focus will be centered around execution as we look to accelerate an earnings recovery that is already underway."

We remind, Axalta, a leading global supplier of liquid and powder coatings, broke ground for construction of a state-of-the-art coatings facility in Jilin City, Jilin Province, North China. The 46,000-square-meter new plant will produce mobility coatings to support growing customer demand in China for light vehicles, commercial vehicles, and automotive plastic components. "Our new plant in Jilin is another building block supporting our ambitious growth strategy for our mobility business in China," said Nicolas Franc de Ferriere, Vice President, Mobility, Asia Pacific at Axalta.

Board of Petrobras approves Prates as next CEO

Board of Petrobras approves Prates as next CEO

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The board of directors of Petrobras approved former Senator Jean Paul Prates as the firm's chief executive, marking a strategic shift for the state-run Brazilian oil company, as per Reuters.

Prates had earlier resigned as Senator, according to a document seen by Reuters, a move that was seen opening room for him to take over as CEO of the oil giant.

A long time energy consultant turned politician, Prates was tapped for Petrobras' top job by President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

We remind, Petroleo Brasileiro SA stepped up security at its refineries in a precautionary measure after threats against assets, including Brazil's biggest fuel plant. The threats were detected by Petrobras' intelligence unit monitoring social media communications of supporters of Brazil's far-right former President Jair Bolsonaro, the two people said. The state-controlled company said on Sunday night all its assets and refineries were operating normally.

Topsoe enters agreement with Steeper Energy to introduce complete waste-to-biofuel solution

Topsoe enters agreement with Steeper Energy to introduce complete waste-to-biofuel solution

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Topsoe, a global leader in carbon emission reduction technologies, and Steeper, a pioneer within biomass conversion technologies, have today signed a global licensing agreement for a complete waste-to-fuel solution, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The agreement combines Topsoe’s unique technologies in renewable fuels and hydrogen production as well as decades of experience in engineering to the table, with Steeper’s proprietary Hydrofaction technology and industry know-how.

With the agreement, Topsoe will be able to provide a complete waste-to-fuel technology solution and at the same time a one-stop solution for refineries, project developers, and industries having access to excess waste biomass. The end-products include Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), marine biofuel, and renewable diesel from waste biomass.

Peter Vang Christensen, Senior Vice President, Clean Fuels & Chemicals – Technology, Topsoe, said:
“We are excited to work with Steeper and to combine our technological capabilities. This will make it easier for refineries and project developers to access the technology they need for advanced biofuels. It will also allow them to access new renewable feedstocks while supporting decarbonization of the transportation sector, not least aviation and shipping.”

Bevan May, President, Steeper Energy, said: “Steeper recognizes Topsoe as a world leader in developing and implementing renewable refining technologies. Steeper’s Hydrofaction™ process, when combined with Topsoe’s technology, completes the pathway from biomass waste to drop-in liquid fuels and is compatible with existing refining infrastructure. This reduces capital requirements and allows for the accelerated deployment of these solutions. We are excited to combine our efforts with Topsoe and bring our joint solution to the renewable liquid fuels market.”

Steeper’s Hydrofaction has been validated through various stages of continuous pilot and demonstration-scale plant operations over the past 10 years. With this agreement, the parties are working towards the first commercial scale deployment of Hydrofaction technology.

We remind, Topsoe to move ahead on setting up solid oxide electrolyser plant in Denmark, said the company.
Topsoe has announced that its board has approved the final investment decision (FID) to start the construction of the "world's largest" solid oxide elctrolyser cell (SOEC) electrolyser manufacturing plant in Herning, Denmark.