Wacker confirms year-on-year revenue upturn


German Polysilicon producer Wacker Chemie AG has this week published second quarter financial results confirming that the company's revenues and earnings are on an upwards trend.

Leading the way is the group's polysilicon division, which increased its year-on-year turnover by 34%, achieving revenues of $367 million in Q2, which also represented a 4% increase on Q1.

Overall revenues for the group were up by 8% year-on-year (7% quarter-on-quarter), climbing to $1.66 billion for the second quarter as a result of higher sales volumes and a strong performance on all five of its business divisions – polysilicon, biosolution, siltronic, silicones, and polymers.

Between April and June, Wacker's earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) outpaced sales growth, climbing to $308.2 million – a 22% Q2 increase in a year. Although Q2 EBITDA was actually 20% down on Q1, the first quarters figures were boosted by ‘special income’ to the amount of $153 million, which was the result of the termination of contracts with some of the company's solar-sector customers. When adjusted for this special income, EBITDA actually galloped home in Q2 some 34% up on the previous quarter as high utilization rates at the company’s production facilities contributed to this performance.

As previously reported, Wacker is expecting substantially higher earnings for the full-year 2014, and already announced that as revised its EBITDA for the year upwards, forecasting a one-third increase on 2013’s final figure of $911 million.

"Following a good start to the year, Wacker maintained and reinforced its positive sales and earnings trend in the April-through-June period," said Wacker CEO Rudolf Staudigl. "Demand for solar silicon has continued to grow and prices have stabilized. The current business trend in our divisions and our order level for the second half of the year make us even more optimistic that 2014 will be a good year for the company."

Asia still on top

Broken down by region, the Asian market remains Wacker's largest, with 42% of all sales generated there, up from 39% in Q2 2013. Year-on-year, sales volumes were up an impressive 17%, with $705 million generated, largely via polysilicon supply deals.

In Europe, sales reached $403 million for the quarter, up 10% on Q1 and a 4% increase year-on-year. Every division in Wacker grew its European sales revenues relative to Q1, said the company. Group sales in the Americas also grew by 3% year-on-year, reaching $278 million, while revenue in all other regions amounted to $64 million, which also represented an annual increase of approximately 3%.

The company also announced that it has invested in the construction of a new polysilicon production plant in Charleston, Tennessee, U.S., which accounted for more than half of the group’s investment spending in the second quarter. The plant is expected to be completed by the middle of 2015, with commissioning of products due to begin soon after.

Polysilicon production remained by far Wacker's biggest revenue source, growing 34% annually to a total of $367 million for Q2.

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