The Woodlands, Texas -- Huntsman Corp. has reported full year revenues 21 percent higher than the prior year, at $11.2 billion, while earnings (adjusted EBITDA) were $1.2 billion, a 39 percent rise over earnings for 2010. Fourth quarter revenue was 9 percent up at $2.6 billion, with EBITDA at $243 million.
"Our adjusted EBITDA of $1.2 billion represents the best year we have accomplished with our current business portfolio," said Peter Huntsman, president and ceo, in a company statement. This took place despite earnings pressure from foreign currency movements and "lower demand trends and aggressive customer destocking within the fourth quarter," he added.
In Huntsman's Polyurethanes business, full-year revenue was $4.4 billion, a 23-percent rise over 2010, with EBITDA at $476 million, a 49-percent rise over the figure for 2010. For Q4, revenues in polyurethanes were $1.04 million, a 10-percent rise over 2010's Q4 figures, but EBITDA dropped 20 percent to $79 million, from Q4 2010.
Huntsman said the increase in revenues in polyurethanes for Q4 was primarily due to higher average selling prices. Average selling prices for MDI (methylene diphenyl diisocyanate) and PO/MTBE (propylene oxide/methyl t-butyl ether) increased primarily in response to higher raw material costs.
The decrease in adjusted EBITDA resulted from higher manufacturing and selling, general and administrative costs, and lower MDI contribution margins.
In a conference call with analysts to discuss the results, Peter Huntsman said the sales volume increase for MDI products of 6 percent in 2011 supports "our assumption that MDI will continue to grow at a multiple of underlying GDP. Demand slowed in the fourth quarter as we saw customers' slow purchases, consistent with seasonality and accentuated by customer de-stocking throughout the value chain," he added.
Huntsman noted that, "the primary challenge for this business right now is improving its MDI contribution margins. Price increases have been announced for the first quarter, which will partially offset the increased cost of benzene," and the group expects additional price increases in the first half of 2012.
(conference call extracts courtesy of www.seekingalpha.com).