PITTSBURGH – PPG Industries reported record first-quarter 2014 net sales from continuing operations of $3.6 billion, up $528 million, or 17%, versus the prior year. First-quarter 2014 reported net income from continuing operations was $277 million, or $1.97 per diluted share. First-quarter 2014 adjusted net income from continuing operations was $279 million, or $1.98 per diluted share, which excludes $2 million, or 1 cent per diluted share, for acquisition-related costs.
“We achieved year-over-year global volume growth of 5 percent, our highest level in three years,” said Charles E. Bunch, PPG Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Additionally, growth rates accelerated in each region versus recent quarters, including in Europe, where our volumes grew 5 percent as we benefited from the early stages of that region’s economic recovery. PPG’s growth was also broad-based across many of our businesses, led by automotive OEM coatings and aerospace, where our performance continued to outpace strong global growth in these end-use markets.
“We delivered excellent earnings leverage on the improved demand stemming from the aggressive actions we have taken to significantly reduce our cost structure,” Bunch added. “In addition, our cash deployment over the past several years is contributing to our earnings growth, including achievement of targeted cost synergies from our acquisitions. As a result, our adjusted earnings per share from continuing operations improved by more than 40 percent versus the prior-year figure, aided by earnings improvement in each major region. Also for the quarter, we more than fully replaced the earnings from our recently-divested businesses.”
Looking ahead, Bunch said, “We anticipate solid global growth to continue, but it will not be uniform across geographies or end-use markets. PPG remains well-positioned with a balanced coatings portfolio, both regionally and by end-use market, providing broad growth opportunities while minimizing the impact of any individual fluctuations. Additionally, we have a stronger cash position, which we intend to deploy in a timely, disciplined manner with a continued focus on earnings-accretive cash uses, including additional acquisitions and share repurchases.”