US Kronos posts $33.9m net loss on lower TiO2 prices, higher costs

07 August 2013 22:45  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Kronos posted a net loss of $33.9m (€25.4m) in the second quarter of 2013 due to lower average titanium dioxide (TiO2) prices and higher raw materials costs, the US-based TiO2 producer announced on Wednesday.

Net sales in Q2 2013 were about 12% lower year on year, falling to $481.1m from $545.3m the year prior.

Kronos had a net income of $64.5m in Q2 2012.

Net sales for the first six months of 2013 were down about 15% to $944.7m from $1.106bn in H1 2012. Lower average TiO2 prices led to the decline, though they were partially offset by higher sales volumes, Kronos said.

The company said sales volumes in H1 2013 set a record for the first half of the year.

In a news release about Q2 earnings, Kronos CEO Steven Watson said that TiO2 price increases announced in May and implemented in June have “generally stabilised" selling prices and that the company expects to implement more increases in the second half of the year.

“Industry data indicates that overall TiO2 inventory held by producers has been significantly decreased, and we believe most customers hold very low inventories of TiO2, with many operating on a just-in-time basis,” Watson said.

“As a result, shortages of certain TiO2 grades have begun to occur, and lead times for delivery are increasing,” he added. “We continue to focus on initiatives to improve our global production efficiencies and manufacturing flexibility to allow us to more efficiently respond to changes in global supply/demand levels.”

($1 = €0.75)

By: Jeremy Pafford
+1 713 525 2653

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