Ashland Global Holdings Inc. recently announced financial results for its fourth quarter and 2021 fiscal year, which ended September 30, 2021. Sales for the year were $2.1 billion, up 5% compared to the prior fiscal year. The company reports that demand trends improved throughout the year following the onset of the global pandemic in fiscal year 2020. Sales growth was driven primarily by improved demand, enhanced pricing, and the contribution of the Schülke & Mayr acquisition. Foreign currency favorably impacted sales by 2%.

“As we indicated with our earnings update on November 1, overall demand during the quarter was strong and the team executed at a high level in the face of continued global supply-chain challenges,” said Guillermo Novo, chairman and CEO. “Because of these efforts, we were able to achieve sales and earnings results that were consistent with the outlook we had communicated earlier in the fiscal year.

“I am pleased with the progress our team has made executing our strategy, especially in the context of a difficult operating environment. We experienced cost inflation for energy, freight and raw materials, while supply-chain logistics challenges remained with only slight improvements in on-time delivery achieved during the quarter. While demand is improving, the persistence of the global pandemic is still impacting consumer behavior. We are focused on capitalizing on the improving demand environment and satisfying incremental demand from our customers while also pursuing appropriate pricing actions to account for the considerable cost inflation we are experiencing. We expect these dynamics to continue into calendar year 2022.

“We made excellent progress during the quarter reshaping our portfolio, strengthening our balance sheet and returning capital to shareholders. The announced signing of a definitive agreement to sell the Performance Adhesives business for $1.65 billion, the establishment of the annual renewable environmental trust, the new $450 million bond issuance and the $450 million accelerated share repurchase program are all key milestones as we continue to execute our strategy.”

For fiscal year 2022, the company expects sales in the range of $2.25 billion to $2.35 billion. “We anticipate improving demand across our businesses and no changes to our underlying operating performance for fiscal year 2022,” Novo said. “While we are seeing meaningful cost inflation for raw materials, freight and energy in addition to persistent supply-chain challenges, our teams are working diligently to implement appropriate pricing actions to offset these dynamics. This is an important year for us to continue executing our strategy and demonstrate consistent organic growth, improving margins and enhanced free cash flow generation.” 

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