DuPont's Titanium Dioxide Facility on Track for Start-Up - Analyst Blog

DuPont ( DD ) announced that a part of its Performance Chemicals segment -DuPont Titanium Technologies - is on schedule to complete the planned expansion of its existing high-efficiency, low-cost titanium dioxide (TiO2) facility in Altamira, Mexico, in 2015. Production at the facility will commence in 2016.

The new facility will help DuPont Titanium Technologies to improve the efficiency of its TiO2 production and enable it to increase or decrease its production as per global demand. The facility aims to manage its assets in a way that meets the changing needs of the customers while providing them high-quality TiO2.

According to DuPont, TiO2 market growth tracks global GDP, requiring roughly 150,000 to 200,000 metric tons of additional product to cater the marketplace annually. The demand is expected to rise in the two-year timeframe of 2016-2018.

DuPont is planning to spin off its Performance Chemicals segment as it is gradually shifting focus to high growth, less cyclical businesses. Separation of the business is expected to complete by mid-2015.

DuPont remains committed to execute its actions to support its more focused portfolio of businesses following the spinoff of the performance chemicals unit. These initiatives are expected to deliver cost savings through reduction of costs associated with the separation of the unit and productivity improvements across the board.

DuPont released its third-quarter 2014 results last month. The company's profit shot up in the quarter on healthy earnings across its Nutrition and Health and Safety and Protection divisions, offsetting continued weakness in its core agriculture business. The company saw higher margins across five reporting segments in the quarter, aided by its cost improvement actions.

DuPont currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Other stocks in the chemical space worth considering include Valhi, Inc. ( VHI ), Trecora Resources ( TREC ) and Kronos Worldwide, Inc. ( KRO ), all holding a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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