Westlake Chemical Corporation Announces Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2015 Earnings

Westlake Chemical Corporation Announces Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2015 Earnings

- Second highest annual earnings of $646.0 million in 2015
- Generated cash flow from operations in 2015 of $1,078.8 million
- Ended 2015 with cash and marketable securities of $1,182.7 million

HOUSTON, Feb. 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Westlake Chemical Corporation (NYSE: WLK) today reported net income for the three months ended December 31, 2015 of $111.0 million, or $0.84 per diluted share, compared to net income of $183.3 million, or $1.37 per diluted share, reported for the fourth quarter of 2014. Net sales for the three months ended December 31, 2015 of $986.8 million decreased $149.1 million compared to net sales of $1,135.9 million in the same period of 2014, primarily due to lower sales prices for all of our major products, partially offset by higher sales volumes. Income from operations was $181.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2015 compared to $302.4 million for the fourth quarter of 2014. The decrease in income from operations was primarily the result of lower integrated Olefins and Vinyls margins, largely due to lower selling prices for all of our major products, partially offset by lower feedstock and energy costs and higher sales volumes. Income from operations for the fourth quarter of 2015 was negatively impacted by lower production rates, unabsorbed manufacturing costs and other costs associated with several polyethylene turnarounds.

Fourth quarter 2015 net income of $111.0 million, or $0.84 per diluted share, decreased by $72.6 million from the $183.6 million, or $1.39 per diluted share, reported in the third quarter of 2015. Net sales in the fourth quarter of 2015 of $986.8 million decreased $201.2 million from net sales of $1,188.0 million in the third quarter of 2015, mainly due to lower sales prices and volumes for all of our major products. Fourth quarter 2015 income from operations was $181.1 million as compared to $254.0 million for the third quarter of 2015, a decrease of $72.9 million. The decrease in operating income in the fourth quarter of 2015 as compared to the third quarter of 2015 was primarily the result of lower integrated product margins resulting from lower sales prices for our major products, partially offset by lower feedstock and energy costs. Net income for the third quarter of 2015 benefited from a lower effective tax rate resulting from several discrete items and other adjustments, partially offset by lost production and costs associated with turnaround activity.

For the year ended December 31, 2015, net income was $646.0 million, or $4.86 per diluted share, on net sales of $4,463.3 million. This represents a decrease in net income of $32.5 million, or $0.21 per diluted share, from 2014 net income of $678.5 million, or $5.07 per diluted share, on net sales of $4,415.4 million. Net income for the year ended December 31, 2015 benefited from a net pre-tax gain of $20.4 million, or $0.16 per diluted share, related to the bargain purchase gain from the acquisition of additional interest in our Huasu joint venture, net of related expenses, and a lower effective tax rate, primarily due to several discrete tax items and other adjustments, which collectively lowered the 2015 effective tax rate to 31.0% as compared to the 2015 effective tax rate on ordinary income of 33.6%. Net sales for the year ended December 31, 2015 increased $47.9 million to $4,463.3 million compared to net sales for 2014 of $4,415.4 million, primarily due to a full year of sales contributed by our specialty PVC resin business, Vinnolit, which we acquired on July 31, 2014, and higher sales volumes for most of our major products, partially offset by lower sales prices for all our major products. Income from operations was $959.8 million for the year ended December 31, 2015 as compared to $1,124.0 million for 2014. The decrease in 2015 income from operations as compared to 2014 was mainly attributable to lower olefins integrated product margins, primarily caused by lower sales prices and costs related to several turnarounds in 2015, partially offset by the contribution from Vinnolit for the full year 2015, increased production at our Calvert City, Kentucky facilities following the completion of the feedstock conversion and ethylene expansion project, higher production rates at our Geismar, Louisiana chlor-alkali plant and lower feedstock and energy costs. Sales prices for the year ended December 31, 2015 were negatively impacted by the significant decline in crude oil prices.

"We are pleased to report strong earnings for 2015 for both our Olefins and Vinyls segments even with a precipitous decline in global crude oil prices, which resulted in lower selling prices for our major products," said Albert Chao, President and Chief Executive Officer. "In spite of this lower price environment in 2015, we benefited from strong demand for our polyethylene and PVC products as well as from the investments we have made to increase our ethylene and chlor-alkali capacities and from our acquisitions of Vinnolit and North American Specialty Products, expanding our product portfolio into specialty PVC resin and pipe."

EBITDA (earnings before interest expense, income taxes, depreciation and amortization) of $251.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2015 decreased by $104.1 million compared to EBITDA of $355.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2014. EBITDA for the fourth quarter of 2015 decreased by $66.7 million compared to EBITDA of $317.9 million in the third quarter of 2015. A reconciliation of EBITDA to reported net income and to net cash provided by operating activities can be found in the financial schedules at the end of this press release.

Net cash provided by operating activities was $1,078.8 million in 2015. Capital expenditures for 2015 were $491.4 million. As of December 31, 2015 we had cash and marketable securities of $1,182.7 million and our long-term debt was $764.1 million.

OLEFINS SEGMENT

The Olefins segment reported income from operations of $138.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2015, a decrease of $104.9 million compared to $243.6 million reported in the fourth quarter of 2014. This decrease was mainly attributable to lower olefins integrated product margins resulting from lower sales prices, partially offset by lower feedstock and energy costs, and higher sales volumes for polyethylene and styrene. In addition, income from operations in the fourth quarter of 2015 was negatively impacted by the costs and lost production associated with several polyethylene turnarounds.

The Olefins segment reported income from operations of $138.7 million for the fourth quarter of 2015, a decrease of $58.0 million from the $196.7 million reported in the third quarter of 2015. This decrease was primarily attributable to lower olefins integrated products margins primarily as a result of lower sales prices and lower sales volumes, partially offset by lower feedstock and energy costs. Additionally, fourth quarter 2015 results were negatively impacted by several polyethylene turnarounds.

The Olefins segment reported income from operations of $747.4 million in 2015 as compared to $1,013.8 million in 2014. This decrease was predominantly attributable to lower olefins integrated product margins, primarily as a result of lower sales prices, partially offset by higher sales volumes and lower feedstock and energy costs for the year ended December 31, 2015 as compared to 2014.

VINYLS SEGMENT

The Vinyls segment reported income from operations of $51.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2015 compared to income from operations of $66.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2014, a decrease of $14.7 million. This decrease was mainly attributable to lower sales prices for our major vinyls products, partially offset by higher sales volumes and lower feedstock and energy costs.

The Vinyls segment reported income from operations of $51.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2015, a decrease of $16.2 million compared to income from operations of $67.8 million in the third quarter of 2015. This decrease was mainly the result of lower sales volumes and lower sales prices for all of our major products, partially offset by lower feedstock and energy costs.

The Vinyls segment reported income from operations of $254.5 million in 2015 as compared to $142.7 million in 2014. This increase was primarily driven by higher vinyls integrated product margins for the year ended December 31, 2015, mainly attributable to the contribution from Vinnolit for the full year 2015, lower feedstock costs and increased production at our Calvert City facilities following the completion of the feedstock conversion and ethylene expansion project and higher caustic soda sales volume primarily attributable to higher production rates at our Geismar chlor-alkali plant, as compared to 2014. The increase in income from operations for the year ended December 31, 2015 was partially offset by lost sales, lower production rates and other costs associated with the turnarounds at our various North American and European facilities, lower sales prices for our major products and reduced sales volume in Europe related to an ethylene shortage. Income from operations for 2014 was negatively impacted by the lost sales, lower production rates and other costs associated with the turnaround at our Calvert City facilities.

 

The statements in this release and the related teleconference relating to matters that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially, based on factors including, but not limited to: general economic and business conditions; the cyclical nature of the chemical industry; availability, cost and volatility of raw materials and utilities, including natural gas from shale production; the price of crude oil; uncertainties associated with the United States and worldwide economies, including those due to global economic and financial conditions; governmental regulatory actions, including environmental regulation; political unrest; industry production capacity and operating rates; the supply/demand balance for Westlake's products; competitive products and pricing pressures; access to capital markets; technological developments; the effect and results of litigation and settlements of litigation; operating interruptions; and other risk factors. For more detailed information about the factors that could cause actual results to differ materially, please refer to Westlake's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2014, which was filed with the SEC in February 2015, and the risk factors in our other filings with the SEC.

 

Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures

This release makes reference to certain "non-GAAP" financial measures, such as EBITDA, as defined in Regulation G of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. We report our financial results in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles ("U.S. GAAP"), but believe that certain non-GAAP financial measures, such as EBITDA, provide useful supplemental information to investors regarding the underlying business trends and performance of the company's ongoing operations and are useful for period-over-period comparisons of such operations. These non-GAAP financial measures should be considered as a supplement to, and not as a substitute for, or superior to, the financial measures prepared in accordance with U.S. GAAP. A reconciliation of EBITDA to reported net income and to net cash provided by operating activities can be found in the financial schedules at the end of this press release.

 

Westlake Chemical Corporation Conference Call Information:

A conference call to discuss Westlake Chemical Corporation's fourth quarter and full-year 2015 results will be held Tuesday, February 23, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time (10:00 a.m. Central Time). To access the conference call, dial (855) 760-8160, or (704) 288-0624 for international callers, approximately 10 minutes prior to the scheduled start time and reference passcode 42581110.

A replay of the conference call will be available beginning two hours after its conclusion until 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on Tuesday, March 1, 2016. To hear a replay, dial (855) 859-2056, or (404) 537-3406 for international callers. The replay passcode is 42581110.

The conference call will also be available via webcast at: http://edge.media-server.com/m/p/rg8achae and the earnings release can be obtained via the company's web page at: http://www.westlake.com/fw/main/IR_Home_Page-123.html

 


WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION


CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS

(Unaudited)




Three Months Ended December 31,


Twelve Months Ended December 31,



2015


2014


2015


2014












(In thousands of dollars, except per share data)

Net sales


$

986,766



$

1,135,871



$

4,463,336



$

4,415,350


Cost of sales


750,578



773,022



3,278,145



3,098,000


Gross profit


236,188



362,849



1,185,191



1,317,350


Selling, general and administrative expenses


55,043



60,462



225,364



193,359


Income from operations


181,145



302,387



959,827



1,123,991


Interest expense


(7,896)



(9,170)



(34,656)



(37,352)


Other income (expense), net


4,480



(7,161)



38,270



(2,721)


Income before income taxes


177,729



286,056



963,441



1,083,918


Provision for income taxes


61,572



98,671



298,396



398,902


Net income


116,157



187,385



665,045



685,016


Net income attributable to noncontrolling interests


5,188



4,094



19,035



6,493


Net income attributable to Westlake Chemical Corporation


$

110,969



$

183,291



$

646,010



$

678,523


Earnings per common share attributable to Westlake Chemical Corporation:









Basic


$

0.85



$

1.38



$

4.88



$

5.09


Diluted


$

0.84



$

1.37



$

4.86



$

5.07


 

WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION


CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS

(Unaudited)




December 31,
 2015


December 31,
 2014








(In thousands of dollars)

ASSETS





Current assets





Cash and cash equivalents


$

662,525



$

880,601


Marketable securities


520,144




Accounts receivable, net


508,532



560,666


Inventories


434,060



525,776


Other current assets


49,928



44,244


Total current assets


2,175,189



2,011,287


Property, plant and equipment, net


3,004,067



2,757,557


Other assets, net


395,996



445,146


Total assets


$

5,575,252



$

5,213,990







LIABILITIES AND EQUITY





Current liabilities (accounts payable and accrued liabilities)


$

522,642



$

537,180


Long-term debt


764,115



763,997


Other liabilities


726,564



710,925


Total liabilities


2,013,321



2,012,102


Total Westlake Chemical Corporation stockholders' equity


3,265,878



2,911,511


Noncontrolling interests


296,053



290,377


Total equity


3,561,931



3,201,888


Total liabilities and equity


$

5,575,252



$

5,213,990


 

WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION


CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS

(Unaudited)




Twelve Months Ended December 31,



2015


2014








(In thousands of dollars)

Cash flows from operating activities





Net income


$

665,045



$

685,016


Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash provided by operating activities:





Depreciation and amortization


245,757



208,486


Deferred income taxes


39,784



58,967


Other balance sheet changes


128,250



79,907


Net cash provided by operating activities


1,078,836



1,032,376


Cash flows from investing activities





Acquisition of business, net of cash acquired


15,782



(611,087)


Additions to property, plant and equipment


(491,426)



(431,104)


Proceeds from disposition of equity method investment


27,865




Proceeds from repayment of loan acquired




45,923


Proceeds from sales and maturities of securities


48,900



342,045


Purchase of securities


(605,098)



(117,332)


Other, net


(2,199)



(1,650)


Net cash used for investing activities


(1,006,176)



(773,205)


Cash flows from financing activities





Capitalized debt issuance costs




(1,186)


Dividends paid


(91,551)



(77,656)


Distributions to noncontrolling interests


(14,856)



(2,204)


Net proceeds from issuance of Westlake Chemical Partners LP common units




286,088


Proceeds from exercise of stock options


1,063



5,524


Proceeds from issuance of notes payable


52,960




Repayment of notes payable


(73,615)




Repurchase of common stock for treasury


(162,459)



(52,630)


Other, net


1,646



6,704


Net cash (used for) provided by financing activities


(286,812)



164,640


Effect of exchange rate changes on cash and cash equivalents


(3,924)



(4,511)


Net (decrease) increase in cash and cash equivalents


(218,076)



419,300


Cash and cash equivalents at beginning of the year


880,601



461,301


Cash and cash equivalents at end of the year


$

662,525



$

880,601


 

WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION


SEGMENT INFORMATION

(Unaudited)




Three Months Ended December 31,


Twelve Months Ended December 31,



2015


2014


2015


2014












(In thousands of dollars)

Net external sales









Olefins


$

468,061



$

598,742



$

2,260,113



$

2,723,690


Vinyls


518,705



537,129



2,203,223



1,691,660




$

986,766



$

1,135,871



$

4,463,336



$

4,415,350


Income (loss) from operations









Olefins


$

138,692



$

243,558



$

747,436



$

1,013,825


Vinyls


51,621



66,280



254,452



142,740


Corporate and other


(9,168)



(7,451)



(42,061)



(32,574)




$

181,145



$

302,387



$

959,827



$

1,123,991


Depreciation and amortization









Olefins


$

28,444



$

26,433



$

110,684



$

106,244


Vinyls


36,931



33,539



134,546



101,666


Corporate and other


153



120



527



576




$

65,528



$

60,092



$

245,757



$

208,486


Other income (expense), net









Olefins


$

886



$

1,840



$

4,656



$

6,102


Vinyls


1,612



1,737



8,540



2,680


Corporate and other


1,982



(10,738)



25,074



(11,503)




$

4,480



$

(7,161)



$

38,270



$

(2,721)


 

WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION


RECONCILIATION OF EBITDA TO NET INCOME AND

TO NET CASH PROVIDED BY OPERATING ACTIVITIES

(Unaudited)




Three Months
Ended
September 30,


Three Months Ended
December 31,


Twelve Months Ended
December 31,



2015


2015


2014


2015


2014














(In thousands of dollars)

EBITDA


$

317,912



$

251,153



$

355,318



$

1,243,854



$

1,329,756


Less:











Provision for income taxes


60,033



61,572



98,671



298,396



398,902


Interest expense


8,211



7,896



9,170



34,656



37,352


Depreciation and amortization


61,248



65,528



60,092



245,757



208,486


Net income


188,420



116,157



187,385



665,045



685,016


Changes in operating assets and liabilities


213,028



89,180



44,359



374,007



288,393


Deferred income taxes


4,497



32,199



24,508



39,784



58,967


Net cash provided by operating activities


$

405,945



$

237,536



$

256,252



$

1,078,836



$

1,032,376


 

WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION


SUPPLEMENTAL INFORMATION


Product Sales Price and Volume Variance by Operating Segments




Fourth Quarter 2015 vs.
Fourth Quarter 2014


Fourth Quarter 2015 vs.
Third Quarter 2015



Average

Sales Price


Volume


Average

Sales Price


Volume

Olefins


-31.4%


+9.5%


-10.5%


-9.9%

Vinyls


-15.8%


+12.4%


-6.4%


-7.1%

Company


-24.0%


+10.9%


-8.5%


-8.5%

 

Average Quarterly Industry Prices (1)




Quarter Ended



December 31,
 2014


March 31,
 2015


June 30,
 2015


September 30,
 2015


December 31,
 2015

Ethane (cents/lb)


7.0


6.3


6.2


6.4


5.9

Propane (cents/lb)


18.1


12.6


10.8


9.6


9.9

Ethylene (cents/lb) (2)


56.2


36.6


36.1


28.2


21.4

Polyethylene (cents/lb) (3)


87.7


76.7


78.3


75.3


71.0

Styrene (cents/lb) (4)


73.5


54.3


65.8


64.2


58.3

Caustic soda ($/short ton) (5)


595.0


588.3


576.7


563.3


595.8

Chlorine ($/short ton) (6)


232.5


239.2


268.3


275.0


285.0

PVC (cents/lb) (7)


69.2


65.5


67.5


66.5


64.5



(1)

Industry pricing data was obtained from IHS Chemical. We have not independently verified the data.



(2)

Represents average North American spot prices of ethylene over the period as reported by IHS Chemical.



(3)

Represents average North American contract prices of polyethylene low density GP-Film grade over the period as reported by IHS Chemical. Effective January 1, 2015, IHS Chemical made a non-market downward adjustment of 21 cents per pound to polyethylene low density GP-Film grade prices. For comparability, we adjusted each prior-year period's polyethylene low density GP-Film grade price downward by 21 cents per pound consistent with the IHS Chemical non-market adjustment.



(4)

Represents average North American contract prices of styrene over the period as reported by IHS Chemical.



(5)

Represents average North American undiscounted contract prices of caustic soda over the period as reported by IHS Chemical.



(6)

Represents average North American contract prices of chlorine (into chemicals) over the period as reported by IHS Chemical.



(7)

Represents average North American contract prices of PVC over the period as reported by IHS Chemical.

 

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SOURCE Westlake Chemical Corporation

(713) 960-9111, Investors--Steve Bender, Media--L. Benjamin Ederington

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