Lanxess Says Fourth-Quarter Profit Rose 37% on Cost Control

Lanxess AG, the chemical maker that joined Germany’s benchmark DAX index in September, said fourth-quarter profit rose 37 percent after the company exercised “strict cost discipline.”

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization and one-time items increased to 239 million euros ($311 million) from a year earlier, the Leverkusen-based company said today in an unscheduled statement. Sales held steady at 2.12 billion euros, in line with estimates. Lanxess traded 1.9 percent lower at 65.63 euros as of midday.

Lanxess said that while demand has remained “soft” in 2013, it expects business to pick up during the year. The company is sticking to a target for operating profit to rise to 1.4 billion euros next year. Chief Executive Officer Axel Heitmann has been counting on Asia to drive demand and is building three new synthetic rubber plants in the region.

Earnings per share in the quarter rose to 62 euro cents from 6 euro cents a year earlier, Lanxess said.