Momentive Performance Materials Inc. recently reported its consolidated results for the first quarter ended April 3, 2011. Net sales were $660 million, compared to $605 million in the fiscal three-month period ended March 28, 2010, a 9% increase. The increase was primarily attributed to higher sales of specialty products improving the company’s overall product mix and ongoing pricing actions. In addition, the earthquake and tsunami in Japan in March and related events negatively impacted operations at the company’s Ohta site, primarily as a result of rolling power blackouts and transportation and supply-related issues, and reduced sales in the quarter by approximately $20 million.

The company reported operating income of $73 million, vs. $63 million in the fiscal three-month period ended March 28, 2010. This improvement was primarily due to improved mix, ongoing pricing actions and savings from the shared services agreement with Momentive Specialty Chemicals Inc., partially offset by higher raw material costs.

“Our first quarter 2011 results reflect the steady progress in improving our specialty product mix and operating leverage from our improved cost structure,” said Craig O. Morrison, chairman and CEO. “We were pleased with our top-line growth, which helped drive a 16% increase in operating income in the first quarter of 2011 compared to the prior year. Sales for our Silicones segment were positively impacted on a year-over-year basis by stronger demand in the electronics, automotive, agriculture, and industrial markets, while our Quartz business posted record results due to robust demand in the semiconductor and ceramics application market.

“While raw material inflation continues, we have made good progress with the pricing actions we announced late in 2010, which is evident in our sequential margin improvement compared to the fourth quarter of 2010. We have also announced additional pricing actions for certain products in the second quarter of 2011 in response to these headwinds.”

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