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March 1, 2017

Volume 17 Issue 52

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Q4 Earnings Wrap-up

Nynas posted a decrease in operational cash flow for its naphthenic unit, Calumet Specialty Products Partners reported a net loss, and operating income was down for Chemtura’s Industrial Performance Products segment. Clean Harbors’ Safety-Kleen segment posted an increase in third-party revenues, and Milacron reported higher operating income for its Industrial Fluids segment, all for the fourth quarter, compared to the year-earlier quarter.

Nynas

Nynas’ naphthenic business unit, which supplies mostly base oils, reported a loss before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of 10 million Swedish krona (U.S. $1.1 million) for the quarter ending Dec. 31, down from a 180 million krona profit in the same period in 2015. For the full year, the business unit’s EBITDA reached 506 million krona, down 21.2 percent from 642 million krona.

External sales for Nynas’ naphthenic business unit increased to almost 2 billion krona in the fourth quarter, up 15.7 percent.

Referring to combined results, President and CEO Gert Windroth noted in the company’s interim report that the fourth quarter financial results remained behind expectations, as they still carried some effects of the delay of the Harburg refinery start up. “In addition to that, crude oil prices climbed to around $57 [per barrel] in December following the OPEC accord in the end of November,” he stated. “Nynas’ corresponding hedge losses could not be recovered in the same period as price increases in the naphthenics business only follow changes in raw material prices with a certain time lag.” The company’s Harburg, Germany, plant has capacity to make 6,300 barrels per day of naphthenic base oil.

For full year 2016, the business unit’s sales fell to 6.8 billion krona, down 29.9 percent from 9.6 billion krona in 2015.

“Going into 2017 we need to stabilize production in Harburg and gradually increase inventories to achieve our targeted customer service levels,” Windroth said. “The next step will be to fully integrate and optimize the whole manufacturing system as an enabler for our growth ambition in the coming years.”

Calumet

Calumet Specialty Products Partners reported a net loss of $79.6 million for the fourth quarter, compared to a $116.8 million loss in the year-earlier period. The net loss for the quarter includes $32.1 million in inventory-related items. Its full-year 2016 net loss amounted to $328.6 million, down from a $139.4 million loss.

Indianapolis-headquartered Calumet’s fourth quarter sales reached $946.9 million, up 5.4 percent from $898 million in the year-earlier period. Full year 2016 sales totaled almost $3.6 billion, down 14.3 percent from $4.2 billion.

Fourth quarter sales volumes for specialty products were up in 2016’s fourth quarter, to 27,653 barrels per day, compared to 25,500 b/d in the year-earlier quarter. Lubricating oils accounted for 15,573 b/d, compared to 14,420 b/d in the year-earlier quarter. Packaged and synthetic specialty products reached 2,092 b/d in the quarter, up from 1,644 b/d. Other fourth quarter totals included 6,901 b/d of solvents and 1,728 b/d of waxes, each up from fourth quarter 2015 figures.

In its earnings news release, the company noted that the increase in total sales volume for the quarter, compared to a year earlier; as well as for the full year, was due primarily to increased sales volume of lubricating oils, diesel and asphalt as a result of factors that included market conditions.

Clean Harbors

Clean Harbors’ Safety-Kleen segment – which includes oil rerefining – reported $289 million in third-party revenues for the fourth quarter, up 13 percent from $255.8 million a year earlier. The segment’s third-party revenues for full year 2016 totaled $1.1 billion, up 4.7 percent from 2015. The third-party revenues include the sales of base oil, blended products and reclaimed fuel oil and a small amount of byproducts.

The company noted it has combined its SK Environmental Services and Kleen Performance Products segments into a single reporting segment called “Safety-Kleen,” which it says reflects the increasing interdependencies between the two businesses.

Growth in the Safety-Kleen segment was supported by higher base oil and lubricant pricing and acquisitions, Clean Harbors said in its earnings news release.

“The company was severely impacted in 2016 by the deterioration in crude oil pricing, which resulted in reduced lube oil prices, lower industrial production and further weakness in the North American energy marketplace,” Clean Harbors Chairman and CEO Alan McKim said in the company’s earnings news release. “Faced with these adverse market conditions, we focused our energies on controlling the areas we could, eliminating more than $100 million of costs over the course of the year. The company also moved forward with several key strategic initiatives, including the completion of seven acquisitions to support our OilPlus closed-loop direct sales model and our environmental businesses.” Under the closed-loop direct sales model, the company will sell finished lubricants back to its waste oil collection customers.

McKim noted the company has seen positive signs across a number of its markets through the first two months of 2017.

“Energy markets are slowly improving, with crude oil prices recently stabilizing in the $50 range,” he said. “This has led to an increase in rig counts. The rise in energy activity also has modestly increased base oil and lubricant prices, even during a seasonally slower period. We are starting to see a growing pipeline of potential projects for this year, and an improving industrial and energy environment should help spur customer spending, which has been constrained for the past several years.”

He said the company expects its OilPlus closed-loop offering to grow steadily throughout 2017, following the national launch of its packaged lubricants in late 2016 and the introduction of bulk lubricants delivery in additional metropolitan areas this year.

Chemtura

Philadelphia-headquartered chemicals company Chemtura’s industrial performance products segment posted net sales of $188 million in the fourth quarter, down 5 percent from $198 million a year earlier. For full year 2016, the segment’s net sales reached $823 million, down 7.1 percent from $886 million.

Chemtura noted the reduction in net sales was primarily the result of lower volume and lower sales prices.

“During 2016, we continued to pass along the benefit of lower raw material costs to certain of our customers where required by contract,” the company said in its earnings news release. “Lower volume and unfavorable product mix in our petroleum additive products – particularly in synthetic lubricants, base stocks and detergents – were partially offset by increased sales of our lower priced intermediate products.”

In the fourth quarter, the segment’s operating income declined to $26 million, down 13.3 percent from $30 million in 2015’s fourth quarter. Full year operating income grew to $148 million, up 5 percent from $141 million.

Operating income year-over-year benefited from favorable raw material and distribution costs, the company said, offset by the lower volume and unfavorable product mix and higher costs for manufacturing, inventory adjustments and selling, general and administrative costs.

Net sales for Chemtura’s petroleum additives segment reached $131 million, down 7.1 percent from $141 million a year earlier. For full year 2016, the segment’s net sales hit $576 million, down 6.2 percent from $614 million a year earlier.

Milacron

Cincinnati-based Milacron Holdings Corp.’s Fluid Technologies segment, which supplies metalworking and industrial fluids, reported operating earnings of $4.2 million for the fourth quarter, up 16.7 percent from $3.6 million a year earlier.

For full year 2016, the Industrial Fluids segment posted $17.4 million in operating earnings, up almost 35 percent from $12.9 million for 2015.

The segment reports sales of $28 million for the fourth quarter, up 2.6 percent from $27.3 million. For the year ending Dec. 31, sales reached $112.9 million, down 2 percent from $115.2 million for full year 2015.