Clariant has reported sales of CHF 1.865bn ($2.159bn) in the third quarter 2011, compared with CHF 1.709bn ($1.978bn) during the same period in the previous year. This figure includes Süd-Chemie sales of CHF 356m ($412m).
In local currencies, sales growth amounted to 25%. However, in Swiss francs, year-on-year sales were 9% higher, as the currency’s value continued to strengthen against most major currencies, particularly in the first half of the third quarter.
According to Clariant, sales growth was driven by higher prices and the acquisition of Süd-Chemie. The company confirms that the integration of Süd-Chemie is progressing as planned, with all project teams fully operational. The business is expected to achieve €75-95m EBITDA improvements by 2013.
The company has noted a slow in growth in emerging markets over last few quarters, as the traditional markets of Europe and North America outpaced Asia/Pacific, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa.
Clariant’s raw material costs remained flat compared to the second quarter 2011, but were 13% higher than in the previous-year period. Increased raw material costs were, however, fully absorbed by higher sales prices.
The company’s EBITDA before exceptional items fell to CHF 216m ($250m) from CHF 232m ($269m).
For the fourth quarter of 2011, Clariant expects the general slow-down in economic activity to continue and further weakness in demand, particularly in Europe. The company also anticipates exchange rates for the major currencies to remain volatile and commodity prices stabilise at the third quarter level, leading to an increase in raw material costs in the mid-teens in 2011 compared with last year.
For 2011, Clariant estimates sales of CHF 7bn - 7.2bn ($8.103bn-$8.334bn).
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