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DowDuPont Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2017 Results

Monday, February 5, 2018/ Editor -  

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Fourth Quarter 2017 Highlights

  • DowDuPont reported a GAAP loss per share from continuing operations of $0.52. Adjusted earnings1 per share increased 41 percent to $0.83, compared with pro forma adjusted earnings per share in the year-ago period of $0.59. Adjusted earnings per share excludes significant items in the quarter totaling net charges of $1.26 per share, as well as a $0.09 per share charge for DuPont amortization of intangible assets.
  • Net sales increased 13 percent to $20.1 billion, with gains in all operating segments and geographies, from pro forma net sales of $17.7 billion in the year-ago period. The primary sales growth drivers by division were: Materials Science – Industrial Intermediates & Infrastructure (27 percent) and Packaging & Specialty Plastics (17 percent); Specialty Products – Transportation & Advanced Polymers and Nutrition & Biosciences (10 percent each); and Agriculture (5 percent). Regional sales increases were led by Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) (25 percent) and North America (10 percent), with gains in all divisions, led by the Materials Science operating segments.
  • Volume grew 6 percent on a pro forma basis, with increases in all operating segments and geographies on broad-based, consumer-led and investment-driven demand. Volume gains were led by Industrial Intermediates & Infrastructure (13 percent), Packaging & Specialty Plastics (8 percent), Electronics & Imaging (6 percent) and Transportation & Advanced Polymers (5 percent). Regional volume growth was led by EMEA (10 percent) and Asia Pacific (6 percent).
  • Local price rose 5 percent on a pro forma basis, led by increases in all geographies and double-digit gains in Industrial Intermediates & Infrastructure (12 percent) and Performance Materials & Coatings (10 percent).
  • Operating EBITDA1 increased 24 percent on a pro forma basis to $3.9 billion, driven by volume and price gains, including new capacity additions in the U.S. Gulf Coast and Saudi Arabia; cost synergies; lower pension/OPEB costs2; and higher equity earnings. These gains more than offset higher feedstock costs and startup expenses related to new assets on the U.S. Gulf Coast.
  • The Company achieved an annual cost synergy run-rate of more than $800 million and more than $200 million of realized savings in the fourth quarter. DowDuPont is announcing today that it is increasing its cost synergy commitment from $3 billion to $3.3 billion.
  • Cash flow from operations in the quarter was $4.2 billion, driven by increased cash earnings and Agriculture’s seasonal cash inflow, partly offset by contributions to pension plans.
  • The Company returned nearly $2 billion to shareholders in the quarter through dividends ($0.9 billion) and share repurchases ($1 billion).
  • Fourth quarter GAAP results include net tax benefits of $1.1 billion (a significant item of $0.46 per share) related to remeasurements and charges as a result of new U.S. tax legislation. The Company expects this new legislation to translate into a 1-2 percentage point reduction in its 2018 tax rate versus previous expectations.
  • The Company is announcing today that it has updated the timing and sequence of the intended separation of the companies: Materials Science is expected to separate by the end of the first quarter of 2019, and Agriculture and Specialty Products are expected to separate by June 1, 2019.

 

CEO Quote

“Our fourth quarter operating results continued the strong performance that we delivered throughout 2017, as we grew our top and bottom lines by double digits in the quarter and the full year,” said Ed Breen, chief executive officer of DowDuPont. “Our 2017 results reflect robust underlying demand for many of our products, the power of our innovation engine and our leading positions in growing markets. We delivered these results while completing our merger, realigning the business around key end-markets, and achieving more than $800 million in run-rate savings from our cost synergy programs. Based on the progress we’ve made, we are raising our commitment for cost synergies from $3 billion to $3.3 billion, an increase of 10 percent. We also are making significant progress standing up the intended public companies, which we now expect to spin about 14 to 16 months from today.”

 

2017 Full-Year Highlights

  • GAAP earnings per share from continuing operations was $0.95. Pro forma adjusted earnings per share increased 22 percent to $3.40 versus the year-ago period. Pro forma adjusted earnings per share excludes significant items totaling net charges of $1.90 per share, as well as a $0.33 per share charge for DuPont amortization of intangible assets.
  • GAAP net sales increased 30 percent. Pro forma net sales increased to $79.5 billion, up 12 percent versus the year-ago period, with gains in all operating segments and all geographies. Primary sales growth drivers were: Materials Science – Performance Materials & Coatings (37 percent), Industrial Intermediates & Infrastructure (17 percent) and Packaging & Specialty Plastics (13 percent); Specialty Products – Transportation & Advanced Polymers (14 percent) and Electronics & Imaging (12 percent); and Agriculture (2 percent). Sales rose double-digits in EMEA (17 percent), Asia Pacific (15 percent) and North America (10 percent). Sales in Latin America grew 5 percent.
  • Pro forma operating EBITDA increased 15 percent to $16.2 billion, driven by volume and price gains, including new capacity additions; cost synergies and productivity actions; higher equity earnings; lower pension/OPEB costs; and the full-year contribution of silicones. These gains more than offset higher feedstock costs, startup expenses on the U.S. Gulf Coast and the unfavorable impact of hurricanes. Increases were achieved in most operating segments, led by double-digit growth in Performance Materials & Coatings; Industrial Intermediates & Infrastructure; Electronics & Imaging; Transportation & Advanced Polymers; and Agriculture.
  • Less than two weeks following merger close, DowDuPont announced certain targeted portfolio adjustments to the Materials Science and Specialty Products divisions to better align with end-markets and further enhance the competitive advantages of the intended companies.
  • DowDuPont satisfied key regulatory remedies required of the merger transaction, including: divesting DuPont’s cereal broadleaf herbicides and chewing insecticides portfolios, as well as certain parts of its crop protection R&D pipeline and organization to FMC; divesting Dow’s PRIMACOR™ ethylene acrylic acid copolymers and ionomers business; and divesting a select portion of Dow AgroSciences' corn seed business in Brazil. The Company also closed its acquisition of FMC's Health and Nutrition business.

 

Outlook

 

“The trajectory of global economic expansion has gained momentum – driven by robust fundamentals in consumer and business confidence, employment and wage growth and manufacturing and infrastructure investment activity,” said Andrew Liveris, executive chairman of DowDuPont. “In developed economies in particular, such as the United States, Germany, France, Canada and the U.K., we continue to see strong leading indicators of broad-based growth. Furthermore, early signs from the business community point to U.S. tax reform as a catalyst for further domestic capital investments, which will take advantage of enhanced competitiveness and pro-business incentives. Adding to this, the emerging middle class in developing economies, most notably in India and China, but also in Africa and the Middle East, continues to support sustainable growth.

 

“All of this bodes well for the products and technologies within DowDuPont’s portfolio, which are well positioned to meet growing needs in the Materials Science, Agriculture and Specialty Product sectors. Looking ahead, our levers of value creation are clear: continuing to further unlock the cost and growth synergies of this merger transaction, capitalizing on our early success and achieving the enhanced cost synergy commitment we are announcing today; delivering new products from our in-flight growth investments and powerful innovation pipeline; and quickly standing and separating into three industry-leading companies on the new accelerated timeline we announced today.”


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