DuPont: solid results for 2Q 2009

Our aggressive actions to improve productivity and reduce costs across the company are paying off as we contend with continued weak demand in key segments,” said DuPont CEO Ellen J. Kullman. “Strong p…

Our aggressive actions to improve productivity and reduce costs across the company are paying off as we contend with continued weak demand in key segments,” said DuPont CEO Ellen J. Kullman. “Strong performance by our Agriculture & Nutrition segment combined with positive earnings contributions from all other business segments resulted in a solid second quarter given the continuing impact of the global recession. We will continue to rigorously apply the financial discipline and operational excellence needed during one of the most challenging economic periods ever seen.” Net income attributable to DuPont for the second quarter 2009 was USD 417 million versus USD 1,078 million in the prior year. The decline in net income principally reflects significantly lower sales volume, current quarter restructuring charges, and adverse currency impact. Consolidated net sales in the second quarter of USD 6.9 billion were 22% lower than the prior year, principally reflecting 19% lower volume and a net 1% reduction due to portfolio changes. Local prices were 3% higher, largely driven by higher seed prices, but were more than offset by a 5% negative impact from currency exchange rates. Lower sales volume reflects the recessionary impact across global markets served by DuPont. The company reaffirmed its 2009 earnings outlook range of USD 1.70 to USD 2.10 per share, excluding significant items. The outlook anticipates prevailing weak demand across key markets other than agriculture with gradual improvement from current recessionary levels during the remainder of 2009. Favourable conditions are expected in southern hemisphere agriculture markets with the benefit of increased market share for new products and related higher selling prices. The full-year free cash flow outlook remains USD 2.5 billion. The company will continue aggressive actions to reduce costs and capital expenditures, in addition to maintaining an appropriate level of investment for high-growth, high-margin businesses including seed products and photovoltaics. Most markets remain dynamic and challenging, but the actions we are taking position DuPont well for the eventual economic recovery, with a strong balance sheet, established global reach and science-based products and services that meet customers“ evolving needs, Kullman said.