Tokyo – Zeon Corp. has seen strong growth in its elastomers business with year-on-year sales up 16% at Yen194.6 billion (€1.47 billion) during the 2017 financial year.
Operating income for the elastomers business was also up 8% during the year ended 31 March at Yen22.2 billion, the Japanese materials supplier announced 27 April.
Sales volume stood at 622,000 tonnes, up 11% compared to 2016. Of this amount, 360,000 tonnes were rubbers, with latex and chemicals forming the remainder.
Of the total elastomers sales, rubber contributed to Yen138 billion of the revenue.
According to Zeon, volume sales for general-purpose rubbers rose 20% during the year, with a 33% jump in export sales.
Speciality rubber saw a 5% growth in volumes, mainly as a result of increased exports.
Despite the strong results, Zeon expects the elastomers business to shrink slightly in 2018.
According to Zeon forecasts, sales are expected to drop 5% to Yen184.0 billion with operating income set to fall considerably at 23% to Yen17.0 billion.
Zeon’s statement did not include details to explain the expected decline.