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02-24-2011

BASF: Record Results in 2010

2010 was a record year for BASF SE, Ludwigshafen, Germany. The company achieved a result in sales of EUR 63.9 billion (+ 26%), an EBIT before special items of EUR 8.1 billion (+ 68%) and earnings per share of EUR 4.96 (+ 223%).

Positive impulses from all regions contributed to the double-digit sales growth. In the Chemicals segment, sales were far above the 2009 level thanks to higher prices and volumes. For some products, there were temporary supply shortages. Higher raw materials costs could largely be passed on in the sales prices. The Petrochemicals division benefited particularly from this development. There was a strong improvement in income from operations in the segment thanks to increased margins, especially for basic products, and higher volumes.

The Plastics segment also posted a strong rise in sales compared with the previous year. The economic upswing in key customer industries led to a noticeable revival of demand. The automotive industry in particular recovered more quickly than expected. Capacity utilization rates at the plants were good. While prices in the Polyurethanes division remained broadly stable, they rose in the Performance Polymers division mainly as a result of higher raw materials costs. With margins generally stable, there was a strong improvement in income from operations.

The Performance Products segment benefited from the economic recovery as well as the quick and successful integration of Ciba and the restructuring of the combined businesses. Demand and sales grew in all divisions, due in part to inventory restocking along the entire valueadding chain, especially in the first half of the year. While special items resulting from the integration of Ciba had a negative impact on the segment’s earnings in 2009, in 2010 measures to reduce fixed costs and the realization of synergies led to a strong improvement in income from operations.

In the Functional Solutions segment, sales were far above the 2009 level thanks to higher volumes and prices. In the Catalysts and Coatings divisions, an increase in sales volumes and sales was mainly attributable to improved demand from the automotive industry.

BASF aims to significantly exceed the record levels for sales and income from operations achieved in 2010. Dr. Jürgen Hambrecht, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors at BASF, said: “BASF has had a very strong start to 2011. However, we are concerned about Libya. Overall, we are optimistic for the first quarter and the year as a whole. One positive result of this is that the total number of BASF employees will increase by about 2,900 in the current year. The focus is on Asia, but we also plan to hire an additional 800 employees in Germany, thereof approximately 500 at the Ludwigshafen site.”

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