Rogers, Connecticut -- Rogers Corp.'s High Performance Foams business, which includes urethane and silicone foams, has reported sales of $31.8 million in the first quarter of 2010 (Q1), an 84.9-percent increase compared with Q1 2009.
The Connecticut-based company reported strong demand for its speciality foam materials across almost all end markets, whilst also seeing increased sales into the mass transit market, "aided by demand for high-performance speciality foams into seating applications in trains," a 3 May Rogers statement said.
The company's $29.1-million acquisition of Ansan, South Korea-based SK Utis Co. Ltd. in March 2010 will also "help growth opportunities in this segment going forward," Rogers said. Established in 2005, SK Utis has "quickly grown into a high-quality supplier of polyurethane foam solutions for portable communications, entertainment, and industrial applications to leading Korea-based OEMs," the company added.
Total year-on-year Q1 company sales were up to $83 936 million from $65 475 million last year.
In the first quarter, sales increased beyond our expectations and we achieved an all time record gross margin of 36.1 percent," said Rogers ceo, Robert Wachob. "The more flexible manufacturing processes that we have developed over the past few years allowed us to quickly react to our customers' needs, and in addition build $2 million in inventory to satisfy future delivery requirements."
Wachob said that the company's markets are clearly recovering, with the strongest rebound in North America with a 35 percent increase in sales, while Asia and Europe each gained about 25 percent.
The Rogers ceo also pointed out that around $80 million was added to the company's Q1 2010 sales figure from the purchase of SK Utis and the dissolution of its 50/50 Polyimide Laminate Systems llc (PLS) joint venture with Mitsui Chemicals Inc. The joint venture was dissolved, effective 31 March 2010, the statement said.
"Historically, the second quarter is generally our slowest quarter and I see this year's second quarter shaping up that way. Therefore, I expect sales next quarter between $83 and $87 million and earnings ranging from $0.30 to $0.35 per diluted share," Wachob added. (RD)