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Itaconix positive on outlook as focus on polymers yields results

"Our objective is to continue to drive product revenue starts and growth," the company said
Itaconix positive on outlook as focus on polymers yields results
Its products are bio-based and therefore environmentally sustainable

Itaconix Plc (LON:ITX) has been reaping the benefits of its reboot last year to focus on polymers and is positive on the outlook for 2018.

The manufacturer and supplier of polymers reported higher first half revenue and gross profit than the same period a year ago while successfully lowering its costs.

Revenue from speciality chemicals sales increased to £325,000 from £25,000 the year before, and gross profit improved to £146,000 from £6,000 the year before.

Organisational and operational efficiencies implemented in May of last year are expected to save the company at least £1mln a year from 2018.

Reshaping the business

Itaconix emerged from the shell of nicotine gum business Revolymer.

After offloading the gum to Danish firm Alkalon, Revolymer retained some of its technology and bought US-based polymer firm Itaconix in 2016 before taking its name in March last year.

The name change came shortly after Itaconix signed deals with Dutch company Akzo Nobel Chemicals International BV and with Croda International PLC.

Momentum building, says broker

Broker N+1 Singer said the agreements with Croda and AkzoNobel suggest “momentum is building with particular success to date in laundry and automatic dish wash applications”.

The business continues to work with a number of industry players, including funded collaborations, to develop new ingredients for a range of applications in its key markets of personal and consumer health care, homecare and industrial products.

Under its agreement with AkzoNobel’s specialty chemicals division, the two are developing bio-based chelates to be used in the detergents and cleaners industry.

The companies hope that by using Itaconix’s technology they can create a renewable polymer which is just as effective but not as harmful.

Itaconix also has an exclusive supply and marketing agreement with Croda for its polymer-based odour removal additive ZINADOR 22L.

Itaconix produces ZINADOR for Croda and Croda markets and sells ZINADOR to households. 

Sustainably sourced products

Other products under Itaconix’s banner include: Itaconix CHT, a water conditioner for binding calcium that replaces banned phosphates; RevCare NE, a bio-based hair-styling polymer; and Eurero RP103, a stubborn stain removal product.

“The majority of Itaconix's products are bio-based, being derived from itaconic acid, which in turn is derived from corn starch, so the products are sustainably sourced and help its customers improve the sustainability of their own consumer products,” the company said.

In a vote of confidence to Eurero RP103, the company revealed in October last year that Società Chimica Bussi (SCB) is investing in additional manufacturing capacity for the product.

As a result of growing commercial interest, SCB has decided to support the availability of Eureco products in granular form and has prioritised the investment at the Bussi plant in Italy.

Upbeat outlook

The board believes there is good reason to be positive about the outlook for the business.

“The implementation of the group's strategy is starting to be reflected in financial performance, and our objective is to continue to drive product revenue starts and growth,” the group said. 

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Itaconix Plc Timeline

February 13 2018

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