4Q: Chemtura, Heritage, Calumet

Chemtura and Heritage-Crystal Clean reported positive numbers in fourth quarter and year end 2013 earnings, while Calumet posted a mixed bag of ups and downs, compared to the year-earlier period and full year 2012 results.

Chemtura

Chemtura reported increased net sales and operating income in its fourth quarter and year end 2013 report. The Philadelphia-based specialty chemicals companys industrial performance products segment posted sales of $242 million in the fourth quarter, up 13 percent from the year earlier quarter. For full year 2013, the segments net sales were $979 million, up almost 10 percent from 2012s $891 million. Fourth quarter operating income for the segment was up $5 million, or 25 percent, compared to the year before, to $25 million.

Sales volume improvements were primarily in our petroleum additives and certain synthetic lubricant products in all regions except Europe, Chemtura said in its Feb. 25 earnings release. We recorded $3 million of unabsorbed costs related to our new Nantong, China and Ankerweg, Netherlands facilities.

Net sales for Chemturas petroleum additives segment reached $170 million in the fourth quarter, up 16.4 percent from $146 million in the fourth quarter of last year. The segments total net sales in 2013 were $689 million, up 14.8 percent from 2012s year end results.

Heritage-Crystal Clean

Heritage-Crystal Clean reported its oil business segment revenues jumped 26.5 percent to just below $42 million in the fourth quarter of 2013, up from $33.2 million in fourth quarter of 2012. Full year revenue for the oil business segment was $125.8 million in 2013, up 11 percent from its full year 2012 number.

While the Elgin, Ill-based parts cleaning, waste services and rerefining company doesnt break out net income for its oil business segment, Heritages total net income in full year 2013 was $4.6 million, more than doubling its net income for 2012. Fourth quarter 2013 income was just shy of $2.7 million, which was much brighter than 2012s fourth quarter loss of $268,000.

The growth was despite several setbacks, which Heritages Mark DeVita mentioned in the companys Feb. 20 press release. During the fourth quarter, our oil business [segment] generated an operating margin slightly less than breakeven, DeVita said. However, the oil business was negatively impacted during the quarter by a contamination incident [affecting feedstock] at our rerefinery. The negative financial impact of the incident was approximately $2.4 million.

Heritages CEO, president and founder, Joe Chalhoub, noted the positives of the year end reports. Although we faced unfavorable market conditions for API Group II base oil, we were able to show improved profitability in our oil business segment during the second half of 2013.

The company attributed 2013s growth in part to its rerefinerys previous expansion of nameplate capacity from 50 million gallons to approximately 60 million gallons of used oil input per year, Chalhoub concluded, adding that company expects to finish its current expansion project in the middle of 2014, which will bring the rerefinerys nameplate processing capacity up to 75 million gallons per year.

Calumet

Despite a rise in sales, Calumet Specialty Products Partners net income tanked in the fourth quarter to a net loss of $15.5 million, down from a $45.7 million profit a year earlier.

Indianapolis-based Calumets fourth quarter sales revenue of $1.2 billion was marginally higher in 2013 than it was in 2012, which brought its 2013 year-end revenue to $5.4 billion, up from 2012s $4.6 billion.

Although its revenue ticked up, Calumets net income sank, resulting in a $15.5 million loss this quarter and a $3.5 million profit for the year. In 2012, the company reported $45.7 million in fourth quarter net income and almost $206 million in full year earnings.

Although our full year results were impacted by planned facility-wide maintenance turnarounds at our Superior, Wis., and Great Falls, Mont., refineries during 2013, the partnership is poised for improved profitability entering 2014, CEO Bill Grube said in the companys Feb. 19 earnings report.

We anticipate a strong year ahead for packaged and synthetic specialty products, driven in part by the highly anticipated launch of our Royal Purple brand of high-performance synthetic lubricants into more than 2,400 Wal-Mart stores nationally, Grube continued, pointing out that Calumet also acquired Bel-Ray in 2013, which he said will help Calumet further expand the international sales of [its] packaged and synthetic specialty products.

Fourth quarter sales volumes for specialty products were slightly lower than they were in 2012s fourth quarter, for a total of 27,400 barrels per day overall compared to 2012s 28,556 b/d. Lubricating oils, solvents, and packaged and synthetic specialty products all dropped in sales, to 13,247 b/d, 8,859 b/d, and 1,175 b/d, respectively. Waxes were up this year, to 1,800 b/d, compared to fourth quarter 2012s 1,314 b/d.