BASF enjoys strong start to 2010

BASF credits rising customer demand with 26% increase in Q1 sales

Following a strong fourth quarter at the end of 2009, Germany’s BASF continued its upward trend with first quarter sales of €15.5bn, an increase of 26% on the same period last year.

According to BASF, demand has risen strongly in almost all divisions, in conjunction with the recovery of the economy. Meanwhile, measures to reduce costs and increase efficiency, and synergies from BASF’s integration of Ciba, which was completed in April, were said to have contributed to improved earnings for the company.

All divisions within BASF’s chemicals segment increased considerably due to higher demand and sales prices.

“We have almost achieved the level of the very good quarters before the crisis,” said Jürgen Hambrecht, chairman of the board of executive directors of BASF. Asia proved BASF’s fastest growing region in the first quarter of 2010, rising 73% to €310m, while Europe was the most lucrative at €1.25bn, although this equalled a mere 12% increase on the first quarter of 2009. “Regionally we saw high demand in Asia and South America. North America is also slowly recovering and Europe is bringing up the rear,” Hambrecht added.

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