"The continued divergence of regional macroeconomic drivers and shifts in industrial competitiveness linked to energy costs are tilting investment decisions mainly in favour of Asia and North America. For Solvay, this context provides great opportunities to convert its vision into value," said Jean-Pierre Clamadieu, Chief Executive Officer of Solvay.
"Our transformation is well advanced: the Group we present today is clearly different from the one we presented last year. Capitalizing on its strengths, its culture of excellence and enhanced business portfolio, Solvay expects to deliver annual double-digit REBITDA growth on average in the next three years and to outperform the market while significantly increasing capital returns."
Solvay has built capability to seize opportunities with its Consumer Chemicals and Advanced Materials growth engines. It has also launched breakthrough excellence measures to fuel sustainable cash generation at its resilient segment Performance Chemicals and to restore profitability of the Functional Polymers segment.
Among the main elements of its portfolio management, Solvay has bolstered its growth potential with the acquisition of U.S.-based Chemlogics, creating an extensive portfolio of tailored chemical solutions for the fast-growing oil and gas market. Moreover, Solvay has progressed in its plans to reduce exposure to the chlorovinyls business with a joint venture project in Europe and a divestment of its vinyls activity in Latin America, lowering cyclicality in its portfolio.
These moves allow Solvay to reposition itself towards a less asset-intensive and more sustainable business model. In addition, Solvay is rebalancing its geographical presence in Europe, Asia and the Americas and enhancing its exposure to various end-markets with superior growth potential.
Actions to increase profitability include Solvay's plan to reinforce its cost leadership in soda ash with breakthrough competitiveness improvements at its key European synthetic plants while expanding its best-in-class U.S. trona mining-based operations.
In addition, more than 100 major commercial and manufacturing excellence programs spanning from energy to procurement and supply chain efficiencies have been deployed across the Group. Excellence also applies to Solvay's innovations addressing a number of challenges linked to sustainable development. These innovations create new businesses, applications, growth opportunities and improve Solvay's competitiveness.
With these developments and its growth levers in place, Solvay now expects its REBITDA to reach between €2.3 and €2.5 billion euros by 2016. Solvay aims to expand REBITDA margins to 18% and to improve its cash flow return on investment (CFROI) by more than 100 basis points compared to 2012.
REBITDA growth will largely be driven by excellence initiatives, which should contribute €670 million versus 2013 levels. Throughout this period, Solvay also plans to selectively invest €700 to €800 million euros per year with more than two thirds of these investments focused on the Consumer Chemicals and Advanced Materials growth engines.
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