US Rockwood makes TiO2 sales allocations amid tight supplies

27 July 2010 22:50  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--Rockwood Holdings has put some of its titanium dioxide (TiO2) customers on sales allocations amid tight supplies and heightened demand, the chief executive of the US company said on Tuesday.

The paint pigment “is in great demand - we are in sales allocation to some customers,” said Rockwood chairman and CEO Seifi Ghasemi during the company’s second-quarter earnings conference call.

Ghasemi said he saw no signs of TiO2 customers rebuilding their inventories.

“There has been some consolidation in capacity [and] as result you are seeing tightness now. It is very difficult for anybody to add capacity now,” he said.

Second-quarter net sales of TiO2 by Rockwood rose 15.8% to $190.3m (€146.5m) from $164.3m during the same period in 2009, the company reported. Second-quarter earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) for the company’s TiO2 segment rose 15.6% to $29.6m in the second quarter from $19.5m in the same quarter last year.

Ghasemi said TiO2 prices were “obviously improving”. North American contract prices moved up in June by 5 cents/lb ($110/tonne, €90/tonne) to a range of $1.22-1.39/lb.

Shares of Rockwood rose by 33 cents on Tuesday to $28.64 on the New York Stock Exchange.

($1 = €0.77)

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By: Brian Ford
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