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Wellman posts bigger loss on record sales

Shrewsbury,N.J.– Resin manufacturer Wellman, Inc. reported a quarterly net loss of $26.9 million for the quarter ended March 31, compared to a net loss of $19.4 million for the same period one year ago.

Chairman and ceo Thomas Duff said, "Although we experienced disappointing overall results in the first quarter, we achieved record quarterly PET resin sales and volume due to strong demand.”

Duff emphasized, “Our sales volume benefited from delays in the start-up of some of the new capacity announced by our competitors and an improved trade balance which was helped by the differential between U.S. and Asian polyester raw material costs returning closer to historical levels.”

Wellman cfo Keith Phillips said the company expects to “significantly reduce debt in the next 10 to 16 months” and also see profitability improve due to “improved PET resin margins and savings from our organizational restructuring.”

Sales for the quarter were $354.5 million, up 8.7% from $326.0 million one year ago – even as SG&A expense was cut 1.4% to $13.7 million.

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