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INEOS Group Holdings S.A. - Q1, 2017 Trading Statement

INEOS Group Holdings S.A. (‘IGH’ or ‘INEOS’) announces its trading performance for the first quarter of 2017.

Based on unaudited management information INEOS reports that EBITDA for the first quarter of 2017 was a record €753 million, compared to €554 million for Q1, 2016 and €559 million for Q4, 2016.

North American markets have continued to be strong, taking full benefit from their current feedstock advantage.  Market conditions in Europe have remained good, supported by the continued weakness of the Euro.  In addition, markets in Asia have seen some strength in the quarter.

O&P North America reported EBITDA of €284 million compared to €229 million in Q1, 2016.  The business has continued to benefit from its flexibility to be able to utilise cheaper NGL feedstocks to maintain healthy margins.  The US cracker business environment was solid with healthy margins and high operating rates throughout the quarter.  Polymer demand was strong, with balanced markets and high margins.

O&P Europe reported EBITDA of €221 million compared to €175 million in Q1, 2016.  Demand for olefins in the quarter was solid in a tight market with top of cycle margins. Butadiene prices in particular have remained elevated throughout the quarter.  European polymer demand was firm in a balanced market, with solid volumes and high margins in the quarter. 

Chemical Intermediates reported EBITDA of €248 million compared to €150 million in Q1, 2016.  There was a significant improvement in performance across all of the businesses in the quarter, with sustained good demand for products together with tight supply side conditions as a result of planned and unplanned competitor outages.  The overall demand trend in the Oligomers business was strong in most product sectors and markets, most notably in the polymer co-monomer segment, supporting the strong polymer markets.  Demand for the Oxide business was stable, with particular strength in ethyl acetate and butanol. Margins in the quarter remained high, partly due to unplanned outages at competitors’ plants.  The tighter market conditions for the Nitriles business were aided by industry supply side issues, which led to some improvement in margins. Demand for the Phenol business was healthy with strong margins and firmer pricing in the quarter.

In February 2017 the Group addressed its capital structure with a complete refinancing of its €4.6 billion Senior Secured Term Loans and the early redemption of the €1.2 billion Senior Notes due 2019.  The refinancing should result in annual interest savings of approximately €100 million.

The Group has continued to focus on cash management and liquidity.  Net debt was approximately €5.7 billion at the end of March 2017.  Cash balances at the end of the quarter were €1,012 million, and availability under undrawn working capital facilities was €451 million.  Net debt leverage was approximately 2.3 times as at the end of March 2017.

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