On Tuesday, Shares of Ashland Global Holdings Inc. (NYSE: ASH) gained 0.04% to $72.20. The stock opened its trade at $72.51 and after floating in a price range of $71.56 to $72.84; the stock grabbed the investor’s attention and traded 1,902,297 shares as compared to its average daily volume of 1.03M shares. The stock’s institutional ownership stands at 99.47%.
Ashland Global Holdings Inc. (ASH), a premier global specialty chemicals company serving customers in a wide range of consumer and industrial markets, recently declared preliminary financial results for the first quarter of fiscal 2018:
- Sales grew 20 percent year-over-year to $842.0M.
- Stated net loss was $4.0M, while loss from continuing operations was $7.0M, or $0.12 per diluted share;
- On an adjusted basis, income from continuing operations was $27.0M, or $0.42 per diluted share. Due mainly to tax reform enacted in late December, Ashland`s effective tax rate for the quarter was 18 percent, contrast to its estimate of 10 percent offered in early November. The tax rate change reduced adjusted earnings by $0.04 per share.
- Adjusted EBITDA was $136.0M.
- Sales increased 14 percent, to $550.0M, driven mainly by the contribution from Pharmachem and strong product mix across key end markets. Year-over-year sales to Personal Care, Pharma and Coatings customers grew 5 percent, 4 percent and 12 percent, respectively. Favorable currency contributed 2 percentage points to the top-line growth. Gross profit increased 13 percent. Selling, General and Administrative (SG&A) costs increased 14 percent, driven almost entirely by the Pharmachem acquisition and foreign currency.
- Adjusted EBITDA rose 11 percent to $105.0M, driven by both Pharmachem and growth in the balance of the business.
- Sales climbed 32 percent, to $218.0M, as the team generated strong organic growth from continued pricing discipline through an ongoing focus on commercial excellence and value selling, as well as business growth in North America and Europe.
- Adjusted EBITDA grew 10 percent, to $23.0M.
Intermediates & Solvents:
- Sales increased 30 percent, to $74.0M, driven by strong pricing, favorable costs and continued healthy market demand.
- Adjusted EBITDA in the quarter was $16.0M.
Balance Sheet and Cash Flow:
- Total debt was $2.90B.
- Net debt was $2.30B.
- During the quarter, cash used by operating activities from continuing operations totaled $24.0M contrast to $60.0M in the prior-year period.
- Free cash flow was ($48.0)M contrasts to ($93.0)M in the prior year. These figures include $23.0M in restructuring costs in the first quarter of fiscal 2018, and $29.0M in the year-ago period.
ASH has a market value of $4.51B while its EPS was booked as $-0.76 in the last 12 months. The stock has 62.45M shares outstanding. In the profitability analysis, the company has gross profit margin of 27.40%. Beta value of the company was 1.16; beta is used to measure riskiness of the security. Analyst recommendation for this stock stands at 2.20.
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