Huntsman Corp. recently reported its fourth quarter and full-year 2019 results. For the year, the company’s revenues declined 11%, to reach almost $6.8 billion (from $7.6 billion in 2018).
“2019 was a memorable year for Huntsman with several milestones achieved that significantly strengthened the company for years to come,” said Peter R. Huntsman, chairman, president, and CEO. “The biggest milestone was the $2 billion divestiture of our Chemical Intermediates and Surfactants businesses, which significantly reduces our upstream footprint. The proceeds from this sale have further fortified our investment grade balance sheet and enhances our ability to focus on and grow our core downstream businesses. Additionally, we acquired the remaining 50% investment in our Maleic Anhydride joint venture from Sasol, we opened a new polyurethanes system house in Dubai, and in early December we announced the agreement to acquire Icynene-Lapolla which will double the size of our existing high growth spray foam business. We remained balanced in our capital allocation by repurchasing over $200 million in stock and paying $150 million in dividends to our shareholders. Lastly, in the beginning of 2019 we achieved our long-term goal to earn an investment grade rating.
“Heading into 2020 we remain focused on what we can control, which will include investing both organically and through acquisitions into our downstream and specialty platforms, and being balanced in our approach to capital allocation, including maintaining a competitive dividend and ongoing opportunistic share repurchases. The economic headwinds remain as we enter the year making earnings growth more of a challenge. However, with our strengthened balance sheet and strong downstream platforms for further growth, I see far more opportunities than challenges before us as we pursue multiple opportunities to create further shareholder value.”
In the 2019 fourth quarter, Huntsman’s revenues were close to $1.7 billion, compared to $1.8 billion in the 2018 fourth quarter, a decline of 9%. The company reports that the decrease in revenue in the Polyurethanes segment for the quarter was primarily due to lower MDI average selling prices, partially offset by higher sales volumes. MDI average selling prices decreased primarily due to a decline in component MDI selling prices in China and Europe. MDI sales volumes increased primarily due to higher demand across most major markets.
Revenues in Huntsman’s Performance Products segment for the 2019 fourth quarter were reportedly lower as a result of lower sales volumes and lower average selling prices. Sales volumes decreased largely due to weakened market conditions. Average selling prices decreased primarily due to weaker market conditions across several of the derivatives businesses and in response to lower raw material costs.
The decrease in fourth quarter 2019 revenues in the Advanced Materials segment was reportedly due to lower sales volumes and lower average selling prices. Sales volumes decreased across most markets, primarily due to economic slowdown and customer destocking. Average selling prices decreased primarily due to the impact of a stronger U.S. dollar against major international currencies; local currency selling prices were essentially unchanged.
Additional details are available at www.huntsman.com.