R&H to take $31m Q2 special charges on products, plant

20 June 2005 15:46  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (CNI)--Specialty chemicals producer Rohm and Haas (R&H) said Monday it will take at least $31m (Euro25.6m) in special charges in its 2005 second quarter on declining conditions in its synthetic leather and gloss lamination product lines and more extensive plant maintenance costs in Texas.


In a statement, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-based R&H said it would report a $16m-20m (7-9 cent/share) non-cash impairment charge for the product lines within its adhesives and sealants business.


The company also said it found “unexpected” operating issues during planned maintenance activities at its Deer Park, Texas methyl methacrylate (MMA) facility that resulted in higher costs and lost production. 


Said R&H:  “These developments will result in approximately $15m in after-tax costs or 7 cents/share.”


R&H said changes in the European textile quotas have resulted in steep declines in demand for European produced synthetic leather while increases in raw material costs have necessitated price increases “which have been extremely difficult to achieve in that market environment.”


The company added: “The gloss lamination product line has suffered a dramatic decline in both volume and profitability due to recent increases in raw material costs coupled with aggressive pricing competition. It was determined that the significant volume declines in both of these product lines during the first five months of 2005 are not recoverable and warrant impairment.”


R&H said its Deer Park facility has returned to normal operating rates following maintenance work. In March, Rohm & Haas announced a scheduled a full maintenance turnaround for the 475,000 tonne/year MMA unit.


Said Gerard Tarzia, R&H vice president and business director of monomers: “In both scale and scope, this was the most comprehensive scheduled maintenance programme undertaken in Deer Park. This investment will improve reliability of our operations.”


Rohm and Haas is a specialty materials company that expects annual sales in excess of $8bn in 2005.

By: Mike Sheridan
+1 713 525 2653

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