COVINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 30, 2012)—Ashland Inc. has reported its first-quarter results, the first since the acquisition of International Specialty Products Inc. in August.
ISP has a large facility for making emulsion-SBR in Port Neches, Texas. The 60-year-old unit has capacity for about 240,000 metric tons annually.
Ashland said it has placed the elastomers activity within its performance materials division, but in communications to shareholders, highlighted ISP's activities in the skin care, oral care and hair care segments.
Lamar Chambers, chief financial officer at Ashland, said in the Performance Materials unit, “raw material declines were greatest within the elastomers business which is relatively large purchaser of butadiene. We buy approximately 165 million pounds per year of those raw materials and over the course of the quarter costs fell by roughly $0.80 per pound. Pricing within the elastomers business was highly indexed and we generally push through our cost for the four to six-week delay.
Chambers said as of January, butadiene has reversed course and costs are beginning to rise.