MONHEIM, Germany - In the first nine months of 2010, global specialty chemicals supplier Cognis continued the positive gains from the first half of the year and again recorded excellent results. Sales increased by 18.2 percent to EUR 2,314 million, due to higher sales volumes driven by an increased demand and a favorable product mix. Sales volumes increased by 10 percent.

Cognis’ operating result (adjusted EBITDA) increased by EUR 153 million to EUR 423 million compared to the same period in 2009 (up 56.9 percent). Return on sales (adjusted EBITDA as a percentage of sales) reached 18.3 percent. These results were largely related to higher sales volumes due to an increased demand, a further shift in the product portfolio towards high-value specialties, as well as better capacity utilization.

Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) rose by EUR 207 million to EUR 345 million. Net profit for the period reached EUR 184 million, representing an increase of EUR 183 million on the first nine months of the previous year.

Cognis generated a strong operating cash flow of EUR 231 million, although investment in working capital amounted to EUR 146 million due to the high level of commercial activity in the first nine months of 2010. Overall, Cognis’ cash position improved to EUR 388 million.

Looking forward, Cognis CEO Antonio Trius commented, “Due to the excellent performance of the first nine months of 2010, we expect to achieve a record full-year result.”