US WR Grace Q1 net income rises 12% to $60.9m on higher sales

25 April 2012 11:46  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--WR Grace’s first-quarter net income in 2012 rose 12% to $60.9m compared with the same period last year, as the company benefitted from higher pricing and sales volumes, the US specialty chemicals company said on Wednesday.

First-quarter net sales totalled $754.4m (€573.3m), up 8.4% compared with the same period last year.

Grace said the improved financial performance during the quarter was because of improved pricing, which increased 8.4% year on year, and higher sales volumes, up 1.5%

However, the increase was partially offset by a negative impact from exchange rates, it added.

Sales in emerging regions represented 33% of total sales and grew 14% compared with the first quarter of 2011, the company said.

“We are performing in line with our plan, led by strong results in our catalysts and construction products businesses,” said Fred Festa, Grace’s chairman and CEO

“We are well positioned to take advantage of new opportunities to move our business forward and deliver another year of solid earnings growth,” he added.

The group’s adjusted earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) in the quarter increased 16% year on year to $111.3m.

“The increase primarily was due to higher sales, improved gross margins and higher equity income from the company’s Advanced Refining Technologies [ART] joint venture,” Grace said.

The company’s adjusted EBIT margin improved to 14.8% compared with 13.8% in the same quarter last year.

($1 = €0.76)

By: Franco Capaldo
+44 (0)20 8652 3214

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