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Huntsman Corp. posts 4Q profit
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Huntsman Corp. posts 4Q profit

Woodlands-based manufacturer Huntsman Corp. remains profitable even in a weakening economy with tighter profit margins.

The company reported a net income gain of $9 million in the fourth quarter of 2015. The company recorded a net loss of $35 million during the fourth quarter 2014.

Huntsman kept its earnings positive even though its quarterly revenues declined by 23 percent from $2.95 billion down to $2.33 billion.

Huntsman plans to cut capital spending the next two years from $633 million to $450 million, a 32 percent decrease.

The petrochemical company manufactures and markets chemical products for consumers and industrial customers. President and CEO Peter Huntsman said he expects continued earnings pressures this year from low oil prices and weakening global economic growth.

The company expects stronger cash flow this year because of cost reductions and fewer restructuring expenses.

The company began eliminating jobs last year, mostly in Europe, in order to save about $130 million annually. Most of the cuts affected three titanium dioxide manufacturing plants in Germany and Finland.

Last year, the company purchased $1 billion worth of assets from chemical developer Rockwood Holdings. Huntsman’s titanium dioxide plants, some of which were acquired in the Rockwood deal, became the biggest financial strain on the company.

Titanium Dioxide is a chemical used as a pigment, for products such as sunscreen and food coloring. With sale prices and demand for the chemical down, Huntsman plans to spin off its titanium dioxide business this year once market conditions improve.

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