Q3 Earnings Roundup

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Ashlands Valvoline segment posted increased operating income, Fuchs Petrolub experienced an uptick in net income, and sales were up for Chemturas petroleum additives segment, while Quaker Chemical reported a decrease in net income, for the quarter ending Sept. 30, compared to the year-earlier quarter.

Valvoline

Ashland posted $87 million in operating income for its Valvoline segment during the three months ending Sept. 30 (the fourth quarter of Ashlands fiscal year), up 13 percent from $77 million in the year-earlier quarter. Valvolines sales for the quarter totaled $484 million, down 7 percent from $520 million.

For its fiscal year ending Sept. 30, Valvolines operating income amounted to $359 million, up 11 percent from $323 million for the previous fiscal year. The segments sales for the 2015 fiscal year totaled nearly $2 billion.

Covington, Ky.-based Ashland said Valvolines record fourth-quarter earnings were driven by good margin management, continued improvement in channel and product mix, strong same-store sales growth at Valvoline Instant Oil Change and good overall volume growth. It attributed the decline in total sales primarily to currency headwinds and pass-through pricing from lower raw-material costs.

Lubricant sales volumes rose almost 5 percent to 43.5 million gallons this quarter, compared to 41.5 million gallons in the corresponding quarter in 2014. Sales reached 167.4 million gallons for the full fiscal year, up 3 percent from 162.6 million gallons.

Within Valvolines international channel, volume grew 15 percent from a year earlier, the company said, driven by strong execution of channel building efforts in addition to the effect of customer destocking in the year-ago period.

In late September, Ashland announced plans to spin off Valvoline, saying the lubricants business is positioned for growth in quick lube and international markets. Separately, Valvoline will focus on growing its network of Valvoline Instant Oil Change stores, leveraging the Valvoline brand across multiple channels to capture new market share, and expanding its presence in Asia, Europe, Latin America and other international markets, Ashland Chairman and CEO William Wulfsohn said in an update in the companys quarterly earnings news release.

Fuchs

Mannheim-Germany-based independent lubricant blender Fuchs Petrolub reported net income of 62.1 million for the third quarter, up 5.8 percent from 58.7 million a year earlier.

Sales revenue totaled 531.2 million (U.S. $581.8 million) in the third quarter, up 9.9 percent from 483.5 million.

As a whole, the company reported growth in sales revenues across its three regional divisions, compared to 2014s third quarter. Europe rose 10.7 percent to 321.4 million, Asia-Pacific and Africa rose 7 percent to 141.2 million, and North and South America together accounted for 90.8 million, up 9.9 percent. The 504.9 million revenue total was lowered by 22.2 million in consolidation costs.

In its interim management report, Fuchs said it anticipates global lubricant consumption will stagnate in 2015 at around the same level as 2014.

Overall lubricant demand in the mature markets of Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Japan and Korea declined up to August 2015, while lubricant consumption in the U.S. has displayed an increase to date within the course of 2015, the company stated. We also expected to record an increase for the developing countries and emerging markets, although this is likely to be lower than in the previous year.

Chemtura

Philadelphia-headquartered Chemtura reported $156 million in net sales for its petroleum additives segment for the third quarter, down 7.7 percent from $169 million a year earlier.

Chemturas Industrial Performance Products net sales totaled $226 million, down 8.5 percent from $247 million a year earlier. The segments third-quarter operating income reached $37 million, up 32 percent from third-quarter 2014.

Our Industrial Performance Products segment continued to benefit from lower material costs, which more than made up for lower revenues that were the result of overall lower pricing, Craig Rogerson, chairman, president and CEO of Chemtura, said in the companys earnings news release. The decline in third quarter net sales compared with the prior year is primarily the result of unfavorable product mix within both our petroleum additive and urethane businesses as well as lower selling prices in our petroleum additives business as we continued to pass along lower input costs to our customers.

Quaker Chemical

Lubricant supplier Quaker Chemical Corp., of Conshohocken, Pa., reported net income of $14.8 million for the third quarter, down 8 percent from a year earlier. The companys net sales reached $189.2 million, almost 5 percent.

Foreign exchange headwinds continue to have the most significant negative impact on our earnings while we were also challenged by global steel industry production being down nearly 4 percent, Quaker Chairman, CEO and President Michael Berry said in the companys earnings news release. In addition, we are seeing continued weak economic conditions in several regional areas, especially in South America. Our sales also continue to see some impact of downward price adjustments due to lower raw material costs.

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