OMNOVA Solutions Inc. recently announced income from continuing operations of $0.2 million, or breakeven per diluted share, for the first quarter ended February 28, 2013. Net sales decreased $24.2 million, or 8.8%, to $251.7 million for the first quarter of 2013, compared to $275.9 million for the first quarter of 2012. The sales decrease was reportedly driven by lower volume of $19.7 million, or 7.1%, and reduced pricing of $4.7 million, partially offset by favorable currency translation effects of $0.2 million. 

Gross profit in the first quarter of 2013 decreased to $49 million, compared to $60.9 million in the first quarter of 2012, reportedly due primarily to the lower volumes. Raw material costs declined $3.1 million in the first quarter vs. the same period last year. Gross profit margins in the first quarter of 2013 were 19.5%, compared to margins of 22.1% in the first quarter of 2012.

“As we expected, operating results in our first quarter of 2013, which has been historically our weakest on a seasonal basis, were lower than last year,” said Kevin McMullen, chairman and CEO. “These results are not reflective of what we anticipate for the rest of the year. As previously disclosed, we lost significant volume in our coated paper chemicals markets late last year, which negatively impacted results in the first quarter. However, we have won new commitments that are expected to offset much of the lost volume, with product shipments beginning to ramp up in the second quarter.”

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