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Sunday, 15 September 2019
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Markets & companies, Raw materials market

Half-Year Results: Altana increases sales by 9 percent

Monday, 10 August 2015

The specialty chemicals Group Altana was able to increase sales by 9 percent to EUR1,070 million in the first half of 2015 (previous year: EUR985 million).

Headquarters Altana AG in Wesel, Germany. Source: Altana AG

Headquarters Altana AG in Wesel, Germany. Source: Altana AG

At EUR210 million, earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) almost reached the high level of the previous year (EUR212 million). At 19.6 percent, the EBITDA margin was below the previous year's margin (21.5 percent), remaining, however, at a high level.

Demand did not live up expectations

The company's sales growth mainly resulted from positive exchange rate effects (8 percent), but also from acquisitions (1 percent). Adjusted for these effects, operating sales in the first six months of 2015 were down by 1 percent, and therefore slightly below the strong previous year's level. "Demand momentum in our markets did not live up to our expectations in the first half of 2015," stated Dr. Matthias L. Wolfgruber, CEO of Altana AG. "However, Altana is very well positioned for further profitable organic growth."

Overprint varnishes business posts significant growth

The Actega Coatings & Sealants division achieved the strongest growth in the period under review. Actega boosted sales by 16 percent to EUR195 million, mainly as a result of acquisition effects. Adjusted for acquisition and exchange rate effects, sales increased by 2 percent. The Eckart Effect Pigments division posted the strongest operating sales increase. Due to special factors from the previous year sales were up by 3 percent. Positive exchange rate effects led to a total nominal increase in sales of 10 percent to EUR179 million. Sales in the divisions Elantas Electrical Insulation (EUR242 million) and Byk Additives & Instruments (EUR455 million) grew by 11 and 4 percent respectively. Adjusted for exchange rate effects, operating sales in both divisions were slightly down by 2 percent respectively.

The U.S. remains strongest growth market

Altana posted by far the strongest growth again in the Americas region. Especially due to the current U.S. Dollar-Euro exchange rate, sales grew by 23 percent. In the U.S., sales actually rose by 24 percent. Adjusted for acquisition and exchange rate effects, sales in the Americas remained almost unchanged at the high level of the previous year, with a slight decrease of 1 percent. Operating sales in the U.S. were up by 2 percentage points. Nominal and operating sales in Europe stabilised at the previous year's level. Asia contributed 10 percent to growth; operating sales almost reached the previous year's level (-1 percent).

Outlook

Adjusted for acquisition and exchange rate effects, sales growth in 2015 is expected to be in the low single-digit percentage range, and therefore at the lower end of the target range of 2 to 5 percent. Altana confirms its growth forecast for the full year and anticipates nominal sales growth in the higher single-digit percentage range.

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