Consolidated net sales of $239.7 million in the first quarter of 2019 decreased 10 percent compared with $266.5 million in the first quarter of 2018. Lower revenues resulted from the divestiture of the Brattleboro mill in December 2018, unfavorable foreign currency effects in Technical Products, and lower volumes in both segments reflecting weaker global market conditions. These items were partly offset by increased selling prices in both segments and a more favorable Technical Products mix. Operating income of $17.4 million in the first quarter of 2019 decreased $6.7 million compared to $24.1 million in 2018. After excluding a $0.8 million SERP settlement loss in 2018, adjusted operating income decreased $7.5 million. The decrease was due to $11.8 million of higher manufacturing costs, comprised of $7.7 million of higher input costs and $4.1 million of operational cost inefficiencies mostly related to lower sales and production volumes. These increased costs were partly offset by higher selling prices, lower selling, general, and administrative expenses and distribution costs, and a higher value sales mix. Click Read More below for additional information.
Solenis, a leading global producer of specialty chemicals, will increase prices by 7 to 15 percent on all process and water treatment product lines across the EMEA region, effective immediately or as customer contracts allow.
The price increase is necessary due to the tightening of raw material supplies globally and escalating energy, packaging and transportation costs.