LONDON (ICIS)--Borealis posted a second quarter net profit of €143m, an increase of 72% compared to the same period in 2013, while sales rose 5.8% to €2.09bn, as stronger margins from its polyolefins business offset weaker-than-expected results in fertilizers, the Austria-based chemical producer said on Thursday.
Borealis said its fertilizers business had been impacted by a turnaround at its site in Grand-Quevilly, France, although the company did not specify the financial impact the repairs had had.
Meanwhile, Borouge, the company’s joint venture in Abu Dhabi, is providing “strong results” for Borealis although it did not disclose either a breakdown for the profits obtained from the newly started up cracker of Borouge 3.
Borealis presented its agreement with US-based Antero Resources for the supply of ethane to its cracker in Stenungsund, Sweden, as the intention of “capturing strategic opportunities” and said the needed turnaround at the cracker would cost €120m.
“On the supply side, the agreement with US-based Antero Resources to deliver ethane to our flexible cracker in Sweden will enable us to take advantage of the significant shift in ethane availability triggered by the US shale gas boom and strengthen our monomer position in Europe,” said Mark Garrett, Borealis’ CEO.
“With the recent agreement to acquire full ownership of Speciality Polymers Antwerp in Belgium, we are adding acrylate copolymers to our portfolio, an important building block for our value-added products in the energy and infrastructure segment,” added Garrett.In what the company called “strategic decisions to remain strong in Europe,” Borealis also said it had signed a series of agreements with German firm SKW Stickstoffwerke Piesteritz in June for the supply of urea and other raw materials as well as energy. The contracts will come into effect in January 2015.
“Although there is still much work to do, we are well on track to achieve full operation of the Borouge 3 expansion through the end of this year, with the successful cracker start-up in June as a key first step,” said Garrett.
One of Borealis' main shareholders, OMV, reported on 12 August weaker petrochemicals profit on the back of lower ethylene margins, which could not be offset by better results at Borealis.