Houston, Texas – Orion Engineered Carbons SA’s rubber carbon black business was hit by high costs and the February deep freeze in the US, despite delivering higher year-on-year volumes during the first quarter of 2021.
Over the first three months of the year, rubber black volumes increased 3.3% to 182.7 kilotonnes, helped by the global economic recovery, particularly in the Asia Pacific region.
Net sales declined marginally by $300,000 (€248,000), or 0.1% year-on-year, to $215.9 million due mainly to the pass through of feedstock costs, Orion announced 6 May.
Despite ‘moderately higher volume’, the segment’s earnings (EBITDA) fell nearly 13% to $31.2 million.
Orion linked the decline primarily to higher selling, general and administrative expenses and the one-time $2-million impact related to Winter Storm Uri, which engulfed a number of US states, northern Mexico and parts of Canada 13-24 Feb.
Adjusted EBITDA margin declined 210 basis points to 14.4%, year over year.