14 May 2009 07:18 [Source: ICIS news]<>>
SINGAPORE (ICIS news)--German biofuels producer Verbio said on Thursday its first quarter net loss widened to €13.8m ($18.9m) partly due to high material costs.
Sales for the three-month period slipped 2.5% year on year to €122m.
“The manufacturing costs based on the contracted raw material basis, could be just partially passed down the market due to the price decline in fuel prices,” the company said in a statement.
Crude prices had been hovering roughly at $40-50/bbl levels in January to March this year compared to above $100/bbl levels seen in the first quarter of 2008.
Operating losses grew to €12m from €300,000 in the previous corresponding period.
The company produced 16% less biodiesel in the first three months of the year at 78,886 tonnes compared to the same period a year ago.
The biodiesel segment swung into a loss of €1.6m from a profit of €4.3m in March quarter 2008.
Bioethanol production, meanwhile, more than tripled to 42,788 tonnes but the segment widened its operating losses to €11.3m from €6m a year earlier.
Verbio said it was difficult to make a definite outlook on how the company would perform for the rest of the year.
“The yield of this year’s harvest is not known yet and the effect of the economic crisis to the raw material prices is not predictable at the moment,” it said.
($1 = €0.74)Bookmark Simon Robinson’s Big Biofuels Blog for some independent thinking on biofuels
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