Venator Performs Well Despite Severe Headwinds

Venator Materials Plc of the UK has reported a second quarter net loss of US$19 million compared with a net income of US$21 million in the corresponding period of 2019. Revenues declined from US$578 million to US$456 million. Titanium dioxide revenue declined 23% to US$338 million and Performance Additives revenue declined 15% to US$118 million.

Simon Turner, Venator’s CEO, said, “Our business performed well in the second quarter notwithstanding the severe headwinds due to the COVID-19 pandemic. TiO2 volumes declined 16% sequentially, in-line with our expectations. Our average TiO2 price remained stable, consistent with our customer-tailored approach, and our decisive cost actions helped mitigate the acute impact of lower demand.”

Venator reports that the lower revenue generated by its Titanium Dioxide segment was primarily due to a 21% decrease in sales volumes, a 1% unfavorable impact from foreign currency translation and a 1% unfavorable impact due to mix and other. Titanium dioxide sales volumes declined across all product categories and regions, most notably in Europe, primarily due to lower demand as a result of the impact of COVID-19.

The segment’s adjusted EBITDA in the second quarter was US$35 million, a decrease of US$20 million from the same period of 2019, primarily as a result of lower sales volumes.

Venator’s Performance Additives segment generated second quarter revenues of US$118 million compared with US$139 million in the same period of 2019. The decrease was primarily due to a 16% decline in sales volume, a 1% unfavorable impact of exchange rates, partially offset by a 3% increase in the average selling price.

The segment’s second quarter adjusted EBITDA was US$13 million compared with US$16 million for the same period in 2019. The decrease was primarily due to lower sales volumes due to the impact of COVID-19, partially offset by a reduction in costs, primarily related to actions taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and a less than US$1 million benefit from its Business Improvement Program.

Kronos Worldwide Inc of Dallas, TX has reported a second quarter 2020 net income of US$18.6 million on net sales of US$386.0 million compared with net income of US$29.5 million on sales of US$484.5 million in the second quarter of 2019. The decrease in sales reflects lower sales volumes and lower average titanium dioxide selling prices. The company’s production of titanium dioxide was 2% lower than in the prior year period and capacity utilization in the quarter was 96% versus 97% in the second quarter of 2019.

Tronox Ltd of Stamford, CT has announced a decrease in second quarter revenue, from US$791 million in the second quarter of 2019 to US$578 million in the latest quarter. The net loss from continuing operations attributable to Tronox was US$4 million compared with a net loss of US$55 million in the second quarter of 2019.

Tronox’s TiO2 pigment sales of US$466 million decreased 25% from US$625 million in the year-ago quarter. Sales volumes were 23% lower and average selling prices were down 2% on a local currency basis and 3% lower on a US dollar basis. Zircon sales of US$68 million were 23% lower than in the 2019 quarter, reflecting an 11% decline in volume and a 13% decrease in average price.

The Chemours Co of Wilmington, DE has reported a second quarter net income of US$24 million on net sales of US$1.09 billion versus a net income of US$96 million on sales of US$1.41 billion in the same period of 2019. Results were driven primarily by lower volumes across all segments.

In the second quarter, the Titanium Technologies segment generated net sales of US$488 million compared with US$567 million in the same period of 2019. Volumes of titanium dioxide were down 9%, as a result of softer demand primarily in Europe, Latin America, and Asia. North America was relatively flat, as the DIY trends helped support the end-market demand in the region. Global average selling prices were flat sequentially and down 5% on a year-over-year basis.

Chemours’ Fluoroproducts segment first quarter sales to were US$523 million in comparison with US$711 million in the prior year quarter. The company says that volume and price declined 22% and 3%, respectively, on a year-over-year basis. Lower volumes were primarily driven by the impact of COVID-19 on global automotive OEMs and industrial end-markets.

Volume 34, Issue 16

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