BOSTON—Cabot Corp.'s reinforcement materials division is benefiting from striking better deals for its tire carbon blacks and a strengthening of markets in China, according to a first quarter results summary issued Feb. 1.
For the three months ended Dec, 31, earnings (EBIT) in Cabot's reinforcement materials segment increased by $14 million year-on-year, on higher unit margins and volumes, linked to 2016 customer agreements, and improved demand in China.
In terms of volume growth, however, Asian volumes were flat compared to fiscal first-quarter 2016, 3 percent lower in Europe, Middle East and Africa, but 3 percent higher in the Americas. Overall, reinforcement material volumes grew 1 percent globally.
Commenting on the performance, Cabot president and CEO Sean Keohane said the reinforcement materials segment "delivered a 54 percent year-over-year increase in EBIT as we saw improved margins and solid demand growth in China."
Going forward, the company expects to benefit from "favorable calendar year 2017 tire negotiations" for its reinforcement materials and "continues to see the environment in China firm up."