Business World

Wednesday 26 October 2016

DuPont profits exceed estimates ahead of mega-merger

Amrutha Gayathri and Swetha Gopinath

Published 27/01/2016 | 02:30

The Dow Chemical logo is displayed on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Photo: Reuters
The Dow Chemical logo is displayed on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Photo: Reuters

Chemicals and seed producer DuPont's quarterly profit topped analysts' estimates as the company intensifies its cost-cutting efforts ahead of its merger with Dow Chemical.

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DuPont said yesterday it was looking to cut its costs in 2016 by $730m (€673m) from 2015's levels. The previous cost-reduction plan, launched under former CEO Ellen Kullman, had pegged cuts at $1.3bn by the end of 2016 from 2013 levels.

Both DuPont and Dow Chemical are streamlining their businesses, ahead of a merger that will create a company with an estimated combined market value of about $95bn as of Monday's closing.

"We are making progress on key initiatives, including further improving our cost structure and restructuring our organization to enhance our competitiveness," said DuPont CEO, adding that the merger was on track.

DuPont's cost-cutting measures, including a planned 10pc reduction in its workforce of about 54,000 employees, will add about 64 cents per share to the company's 2016 profit.

The company said it expects full-year operating earnings of $2.95-$3.10 per share, compared with analysts' average estimate of $3.10 per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Excluding $622m of restructuring and other charges, fourth-quarter operating profit was 27 cents per share, slightly above analysts' average estimate of 26 cents.

The company said its cost-reduction efforts added 10 cents to its profit in the three months ended December 31.

Net loss attributable to the company was $253m, or 29 cents per share, in the quarter, compared with a profit of $683 million, or 74 cents per share, a year earlier. Net sales fell 9.4pc to $5.3bn. (Reuters)

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