- Sales rise based on prices and currency effects
- Earnings significantly above level of 2011, particularly as a result of higher margins for TDI
- Continuous expansion of our system house network
- Outlook 2013: increase in sales and earnings
Polyurethanes – Sales by region
(Location of customer)
Driven by currencies and prices, sales to third parties in the Polyurethanes division rose by €440 million to €6,292 million (volumes –1%, prices 4%, currencies 5%). While we were able to achieve sales increases in almost all product lines in North America and Asia, sales in Europe declined due to lower volumes.
In the first half of the year, demand grew from the automotive industry; however, it weakened in the second part of the year, particularly in Europe. We posted significantly lower demand from the construction sector in southern Europe.
We successfully expanded our business with specialties. Supported by production outages among our competitors in Asia and North America, we were able to raise sales prices and improve margins. Mostly because of higher margins for TDI, income from operations considerably exceeded the level of 2011.
At the end of 2012, we started the construction of a TDI production plant in Ludwigshafen with an annual capacity of 300,000 metric tons per year. In addition to economies of scale, this investment will enable highly efficient integration within our Verbund. Production is expected to begin at the end of 2014.
As the leading supplier of polyurethane solutions, we are continually expanding our global network of system houses. We have 39 system houses that offer complete solutions which range from technical service for our customers to swift local support in the development of individual solutions. We began operations at our system houses in Tianjin, China, and St. Petersburg, Russia, in October 2012. With the acquisition of ITWC in Malcom, Iowa, we gained an additional system house in North America. Furthermore, we are planning to construct a polyurethane system house in Chongqing, China, and a production site in Dahej, India.
We anticipate an unchanged market environment for 2013. Compared with 2012, we expect our sales and earnings to rise.