Rentech releases first quarter financial results

By Erin Voegele | May 12, 2017

Rentech Inc. has released first quarter financial results, reporting consolidated revenues from continuing operations of $32.2 million, down from $39.9 million during the same period of the previous year. Gross loss was $700,000, compared to gross profit of $100,000 during the first quarter of 216. Operating loss from continuing operations was $31 million, compared an operating loss of $10 million during the same three months of last year. Net loss attributable to Rentech common shareholders was $34.3 million, or a net loss of $1.48 per basic share. This compares to a net loss of $10.2 million, or 44 cents per basic share, during the first quarter of 2016.

Revenues for the Fulghum Fibers division were $19.9 million, down from $27.4 million during the first quarter of last year. During the quarter, Rentech said Fulghum Fiber mills in the U.S. processed 2.5 million green metric tons of logs into residual wood chips and residual fuels. South American mills processed an additional 800,000 tons of logs. During the same period of 2016, U.S. mills processed 3.2 million tons of logs, while South American mills processed 900,000 tons. Operating loss for Fulghum Fibers was 20.4 million, compared to an operating income of $2.9 million reported for the first quarter of 2016.

The New England Wood Pellet division reported revenues of $4.1 million on deliveries of approximately 22,000 tons of wood pellets. During the same period of last year, revenues were $2.6 million on deliveries of approximately 13,000 tons of wood pellets. NEWP plants produced at approximately 43 percent of capacity during the quarter, compared to 77 percent during the same three months of 2016. Gross profit was $400,000, which is consistent with the same quarter of last year. Operating loss was $400,000 for the first quarters of both 2017 and 2016.

Rentech also reported revenues for industrial wood pellets were $8.1 million, earned for the delivery of approximately 57,000 metric tons of wood pellets. Revenues were $9.9 million during the same period of last year, earned by delivering approximately 64,000 metric tons of wood pellets. Net loss for the quarter was $6.4 million, compared to a net loss of $6.7 million reported for the same quarter of 2016.

During an investor call, Keith Forman, president and CEO of Rentech, said the company’s consolidated results for the quarter were impacted by continued soft demand for retail wood pellets, lower industrial pellet sales, the sale of a Fulghum mill last year, and other factors.

He noted the company’s Wawa pellet mill has been idle since early March. He also noted the company has filled its contractual obligations of Ontario Power Generation with pellets produced at the Atikokan plant. That plant has been operating at reduced levels since early March, he added. In addition, Forman indicated the company remains actively engaged in the strategic review process for the Wawa plant and the company as a whole.