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Evonik hikes 2021 guidance but quarterly beat lags peers - Metro US

Evonik hikes 2021 guidance but quarterly beat lags peers

FILE PHOTO: The logo of German specialty chemical company Evonik Industries AG is pictured at their plant in Bitterfeld

(Reuters) – Germany’s Evonik Industries raised its outlook after beating second-quarter earnings forecasts on Thursday but its shares fell as analysts pointed to bigger gains at rival chemical makers.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) adjusted for one-offs rose 42% to 649 billion euros, topping the 633 million forecast in a company-provided poll.

“Evonik’s second-quarter beat was less than at other EU chemicals,” Baader Helvea analyst Markus Meyer said, but added that the company’s defensive portfolio meant its earnings declined less during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Due to increased raw material prices, the profit margin in the past quarter fell short of expectations,” a local trader said.

Evonik shares fell 2.7% as of 0945 GMT.

The company raised its 2021 EBITDA outlook to 2.3-2.4 billion euros ($2.7-2.8 billion) from 2.1-2.3 billion euros.

In July, Dutch peer DSM and German competitor BASF raised their 2021 forecasts backed by strong sales and demand from industrial customers.

Evonik, whose materials are used in products ranging from animal feed to Pfizer/BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine, is in the middle of a strategic shift towards higher margin specialty chemicals that has helped it ride out the pandemic.

It said its second-quarter earnings were driven by a post-lockdown rebound in the construction, consumer goods and automotive industries, helped by improved pricing in animal nutrition and steady growth in the healthcare business.

Evonik shares are up 8.5% this year, outperforming German peers such as Lanxess and BASF but lagging Dutch rival DSM.

($1=0.8450 euros)

(Reporting by Bartosz Dabrowski in Gdansk; Additional reporting by Jagoda Darlak; Editing by Clarence Fernandez and Jason Neely)

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