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BASF celebrates record margin thanks to strong chemicals growth

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-10-25 08:50

BERLIN — German chemicals giant BASF has continued to witness strong revenue and profit growth in the third quarter (Q3) of 2017, earnings figures released by the firm on Tuesday showed.

Revenue at BASF rose by nine percent to 15.5 billion euros ($18 billion), while profits surged by 16 percent to a total of 1.76 billion euros. The Ludwigshafen-based company hereby succeeded in surpassing analyst expectations which were already optimistic about its prospects.

BASF is the world's largest chemicals producer by revenue. Chief Executive Director Kurt Bock attributed the positive development to continued strong demand for its products in Q3.

In the press statement, Bock further voiced confidence that his firm would continue to experience growth in the second half of 2017 "significantly above the level of the second half of 2016".

BASF is currently set to witness a jump in operating profit of more than 20 percent over the course of 2017, having already seen annual growth of 26 percent during the first nine months of the year.

When contacted by Xinhua, a BASF representative referred to the quarterly statement that acknowledges the importance of the Asian market. "We increased volumes significantly in Europe as well as in Asia, especially China and Japan."

However, the Q3 figures also illustrate that BASF's success is heavily dependent on the performance of its basic chemicals and plastic precursor products businesses. The joint division, entitled "chemicals" accounted for roughly a quarter of corporate revenue alone with around 4 billion euros.

Thanks to price increases and high margins, the chemicals unit was able to more than double its operating profit in Q3 from 488 million euros to 1.1 billion euros, achieving a record margin of 27 percent. As a consequence, it is currently contributing more to corporate profits than all other BASF divisions combined.

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