Markets

KBR Wins a Catalyst Supply Contract From Shenghong in China

KBR, Inc. KBR has received a contract from Shenghong Refining Petrochemical (Lianyungang) Co. Ltd. to provide proprietary catalyst for the latter’s grassroot 300 KTA Vinyl Acetate Monomer (VAM) unit in China.

Notably, this is the first commercial VAM technology license and engineering contract for KBR and Showa Denko K.K. (SDK). Backed by more than 40 years of experience, the KBR-SDK VAM technology has been enabling safe and stable operation of SDK's ethylene-based VAM unit, located at the Oita Petrochemical Complex in Japan.

Notably, the deal highlights the emerging leadership of KBR's Technology Solutions business in the VAM market.

KBR's Integrated & Innovative Solutions Bode Well

KBR has been delivering innovative and reliable process technologies to help refinery and petrochemical plants offer optimum production and lower operating costs over the past several years. The company has been delivering petrochemical manufacturers with 50 years of expertise to produce ethylene, propylene, acetyls, phenolics, vinyls and other specialty products from a variety of feedstocks, safely and efficiently.

In fact, VAM is a significant component for the production of polymers and resins for adhesives, coatings, paints, films, textiles, as well as other products.

At first quarter-end, KBR’s Technology Solutions segment booked $527-million contract backlog. KBR expects thriving global technology opportunities — led by ammonia, refining and olefins projects — to persist.

The segment continues to perform well in recent times, driven by refining and petrochemical projects in China, India and Africa, as well as strong technologies demand.



Shares of KBR have broadly outperformed the industry in the past year. Its shares have performed pretty well owing to ongoing contract wins, acquisitions and robust organic growth. We believe that the recent move will further boost the company’s performance.

KBR — which shares space with Fluor Corporation FLR, Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. J and AECOM ACM in the same industry — currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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