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Specialty Chemical Company China XD Plastics Announces Third Quarter 2017 Financial Results
HARBIN, China, Nov. 9, 2017 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Copyright (C) 2017 PR Newswire. All rights reserved

Revenue of $311.4 million - - Net Income of $14.1 million - - Reiterating Fiscal 2017 Guidance of $1.2 - $1.3 Billion in Revenue, $85.0 - $100.0 Million in Net Income -

China XD Plastics Company Limited (NASDAQ: CXDC) ("China XD Plastics" or the "Company"), one of China's leading specialty chemical companies engaged in the development, manufacture and sale of polymer composite materials primarily for automotive applications, today announced its financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2017.

Third Quarter 2017 Financial Summary

-- Revenue was $311.4 million, a decrease of 6.1% YoY

-- Gross profit was $47.3 million, a decrease of 32.0% YoY

-- Gross margin of 15.2%, a decrease of 580 basis points YoY

-- Net income was $14.1 million, a decrease of 30.2% YoY

-- EBITDA was $39.0 million, a decrease of 15.4% YoY

-- Total volume shipped was 111,852 metric tons, up 3.0% YoY

"Our total revenue fell short of expectations for the third quarter, although our PRC domestic revenue was up marginally as compared to the same period last year," said Jie Han, Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer. "As reported by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers, for the first nine months of 2017, automobile production increased 5.5% relative to the same period last year. A favorable macroeconomic environment throughout China's automotive supply chain led to positive growth in our sales volume, although this was offset by the Company's marketing strategy of offering lower-end products with lower RMB pricing in order to further penetrate the new regional markets in Central China and South China, which negatively affected our average selling price and gross margin. However, we are confident in our operating capabilities and believe that our new geographical positioning and new development projects will create a more robust and diversified enterprise."

Mr. Han continued, "We continued to gain traction into new territories attributable to our new, state-of-the-art Sichuan manufacturing facility located in southwest China. When fully operational, this strategic initiative will add 300,000 metric tons of annual production capacity to our 390,000 metric tons of annual production capacity from our more established northeast Harbin plant. Our Sichuan facility currently has 50 production lines with 216,000 metric tons of annual production capacity, and we expect that the ongoing construction at our Sichuan campus will be completed by the end of the first quarter of 2018. The installation of high precision equipment in our Sichuan facilities will enable us to broaden our product platform to serve an array of high-growth verticals which will ultimately result in additional income streams."

"We are very enthusiastic about all of our new industrial projects. Our development project with the Management Committee of Harbin Economic - Technological Development Zone includes an industrial project for upgrading existing equipment for 100,000 metric tons of engineering plastics, which we expect will be completed by the end of June 2018. Also included is an industrial project for 300,000 metric tons of biological composite materials, an industrial project for a 3D printing intelligent manufacture demonstration factory and a 3D printing display and experience cloud factory, all of which we expect to be completed by the end of July 2019. We anticipate our development project with the People's Government of Shunqing District, Nanchong City of Sichuan Province for the production of 300,000 metric tons of bio-composite materials and additive manufacturing and 20,000 metric tons of functional masterbatch will be completed by the end of December 2018."

"Our Dubai facility extends our specialized high-tech products into an important overseas market. We plan to complete the installation of 45 production lines with 12,000 metric tons of annual production capacity by the first quarter of 2018, and to complete the installation of an additional 50 production lines with 13,000 metric tons of annual production capacity by the end of 2018. This will bring the total annual production capacity of our Dubai facility to 25,000 metric tons. The Dubai facility will target high-end products for overseas markets and will ultimately help us both source raw materials and make inroads into the markets of Europe, the Middle East, Russia and other overseas markets."

"We believe that our increased production capabilities, geographical expansion and more diversified customer base both strengthen and augment our core automotive business. Further, our new development projects, which leverage our technical expertise, could lead to additional new business. We view ourselves as the leader in the polymer composites sector, which will enable us to provide creative technology solutions for China's modernizing transportation, energy, healthcare and industrial sectors. We reiterate our financial guidance for fiscal 2017 and continue to be excited by our core market positioning and expanded platform for growth," Mr. Han concluded.

Third Quarter 2017 Results

Revenues were $311.4 million for the third quarter of 2017, compared to $331.8 million for the same period of 2016, representing a decrease of $20.4 million, or 6.1%. The year-over-year decrease was primarily due to an 8.3% decrease in the average RMB selling price of our products, attributable to the current quarter's greater percentage of lower-end modified polypropylene sold in China, offset by a 3.0% increase in sales volume. There was also a 0.6% negative impact from the exchange rate due to the weakening RMB against the US dollar in the current quarter as compared to the same period of 2016.

PRC domestic revenues increased by 0.8% in the third quarter of 2017, compared to the same period of 2016, driven by modest growth in demand for our products in the China market and our continued efforts to expand our customer base attributable to our new plant in Sichuan. In the current quarter, we recorded sales increases of 42.8% in Central China, 61.1% in Southwest China and 0.5% in North China, which was offset by decreases of 5.1% in South China, 5.2% in East China and 6.8% in Northeast China as compared to the same period in 2016. Overseas sales resumed in the second quarter of 2017 and were $14.1 million in the current quarter, compared to $37.0 million in the same period of 2016, representing a decrease of $22.9 million, or 61.9%. The overseas customer has made payments of $62.6 million for the first three quarters of 2017, and expects to pay off the overdue outstanding balance of $44.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2017.

Premium products (PA66, PA6, Plastic Alloy, PLA, POM and PPO) in total accounted for 74.9% of revenues in the third quarter of 2017, compared to 82.8% for the same period of 2016. During the third quarter of 2017, the Company implemented a marketing strategy of offering lower-end products with lower RMB pricing to further penetrate the new regional markets in Central China and Southwest China. Pending this marketing strategy, the Company intends to shift its production mix on a longer-term basis from traditional lower-end products to higher-end products such as modified polylactic acid (PLA), primarily due to (i) greater growth potential of advanced modified plastics in luxury automobile models in China, (ii) the stronger demand as a result of promotion by the Chinese government for clean energy vehicles and (iii) better quality from end consumer recognition of higher-end cars made by automotive manufacturers from Chinese and Germany joint ventures, and U.S. and Japanese joint ventures, which manufacturers tend to use more and higher-end modified plastics in quantity per vehicle in China.

Gross profit was $47.3 million in the third quarter ended September 30, 2017, compared to $69.6 million in the same period of 2016, representing a decrease of $22.3 million, or 32.0%. Our gross margin decreased to 15.2% for the third quarter ended September 30, 2017 from 21.0% for the same quarter of 2016 primarily due to (i) the usage of higher-priced modified polyamide (PA) raw materials inventory for the third quarter of 2017 leading to higher cost of goods sold, (ii) lower sales of higher-end products by Dubai Xinda; and (iii) implementation of a marketing strategy to offer lower-end products with lower RMB pricing to further penetrate the new regional markets in Central China and Southwest China for the third quarter of 2017 as compared to that of the prior year.

General and administrative (G&A) expenses were $10.4 million for the third quarter of 2017, compared to $8.4 million for the same period of 2016, representing an increase of $2.0 million, or 23.8%. This increase was primarily due to the increase of (i) $2.2 million in salary and welfare expenses resulting from the increase in the number of management and general staff from supporting departments and in average salary and bonus, and (ii) $0.3 million in depreciation and amortization which was partially offset by the decrease of (iii) $0.3 million in professional fees, and (iv) $0.2 million in travelling and transportation.

Research and development (R&D) expenses were $9.8 million for the third quarter of 2017, compared to $7.9 million for the same period of 2016, representing an increase of $1.9 million, or 24.1%. This increase was primarily due to (i) elevated R&D activities to meet the higher quality requirements of potential customers from Europe mainly engaged in the automobile components industry; and (ii) increased efforts directed towards applications in new electrical equipment and electronics, alternative energy applications, power devices, aviation equipment and ocean engineering, in addition to other new products primarily for advanced industrialized applications in the automobile sector and in new verticals such as ships, airplanes, high-speed rail, 3D printing materials, biodegradable plastics and medical devices. As of September 30, 2017, the number of ongoing research and development projects was 366.

Operating income was $26.2 million for the third quarter of 2017, compared to $53.1 million for the same period of 2016, representing a decrease of $26.9 million, or 50.7%. This decrease was primarily due to lower gross profit, higher G&A expenses and higher R&D expenses.

Net interest expense was $9.0 million for the third quarter of 2017, compared to net interest expense of $9.7 million for the same period of 2016, representing a decrease of $0.7 million, or 7.2%. This decrease was primarily due to the increase in interest income resulting from the increase in the average deposit balance to $503.1 million for the three month period ended September 30, 2017 compared to $355.8 million for the same period in 2016, and an increase of the average interest rate to 1.5% for the three month period ended September 30, 2017 compared to 1.4% for the same period of 2106.

Income tax expense was $3.1 million for the third quarter of 2017, representing an effective income tax rate of 17.8%, compared to income tax expense of $5.3 million in the same period of 2016, representing an effective income tax rate of 20.8%. The decrease of the effective income tax rate was primarily due to a greater portion of the profit generated by Sichuan Xinda which enjoys preferential tax rate and the increase of the 50% additional deduction of R&D expense. The effective income tax rate for the three-month ended September 30, 2017 differs from the PRC statutory income tax rate of 25% primarily due to Sichuan Xinda Enterprise Group Company Limited's preferential income tax rate and R&D 50% additional deduction of the major PRC operating entities.

Net income was $14.1 million for the third quarter of 2017, compared to $20.2 million for the same period of 2016, representing a decrease of $6.1 million, or 30.2%. Basic and diluted earnings per share in the current quarter were $0.21, compared to $0.31 per basic and diluted share for the same period of 2016. The average number of shares used in the computation of basic and diluted earnings per share current quarter was 49.6 million compared to 49.5 million shares for basic and diluted earnings per share in the prior year period.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) was $39.0 million for the third quarter of 2017, compared to $46.1 million for the same period of 2016, representing an decrease of $7.1 million, or 15.4%. For a detailed reconciliation of EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure, to its nearest GAAP equivalent, please see the financial tables at the end of this release.

Financial Condition

As of September 30, 2017, the Company had $531.2 million in cash and cash equivalents, restricted cash and time deposits, an increase of $74.8 million or 16.4% as compared to $456.4 million as of December 31, 2016. As of the current period, working capital was $128.2 million (current assets minus current liabilities) and the current ratio (current assets divided by current liabilities) was 1.1, as compared to the current ratio of 1.2 as of December 31, 2016. Stockholders' equity as of September 30, 2017 was $720.4 million, an increase of $86.1 million or 13.6% as compared to $634.3 million as of December 31, 2016.

Inventories increased by $127.8 million or 45.5% to $408.7 million as of the third quarter of 2017 as compared to fiscal year end 2016 as a result of more purchases of raw materials and the Company's strategy to stock up on finished goods for anticipated upcoming orders. The aggregate short-term and long-term bank loans increased by $144.3 million or 20.8% to $838.6 million due to the utilization of existing lines of credit to support the expansion of the Sichuan and Dubai facilities. We define the manageable debt level as the sum of aggregate short-term and long-term loans over total assets. We expect that we will be able to meet our needs to fund operations, capital expenditures and other commitments in the next 12 months primarily with our cash and cash equivalents, operating cash flows and bank borrowings.

Financial Guidance and Business Outlook

The Company reiterates its financial guidance for fiscal 2017 with revenue to range between $1.2 billion and $1.3 billion, and net income to range between $85.0 million to $100.0 million. This is based on the anticipation of a continued recovery throughout the Chinese automotive supply chain and a stabilization of crude oil pricing and its impact on polymer composite materials in 2017. This forecast also assumes additional contributions from the Sichuan facility and that overseas sales will stablize as expected. It also assumes the average exchange rate of the US dollar to RMB at 6.8 and that the Company will incur interest expenses for long term loans and short term loans. This financial guidance reflects the Company's view of its business outlook for the fiscal year of 2017 and is subject to revision based on changing market conditions at any time.

Conference Call

China XD Plastics' senior management will host a conference call at 9:00 am Eastern Time on Thursday, November 9, 2017, to discuss its third quarter 2017 financial results. The conference call can be accessed by dialing 1-866-564-2842 or +1-323-794-2094 (for callers in the U.S.), +86-4001-209-221 (for Mainland China callers) or +852-3008-1527 (for Hong Kong callers) and entering pass code 5456886.

A recording of the conference call will be available through November 16, 2017, by calling +1-888-203-1112 (for callers in the U.S.) and entering pass code 5456886.

A live webcast and replay of the conference call will be available on the investor relations page of the Company's website at http://chinaxd.irpass.com/.

About China XD Plastics Company Limited

China XD Plastics Company Limited, through its wholly-owned subsidiaries, develops, manufactures and sells polymer composites materials, primarily for automotive applications. The Company's products are used in the exterior and interior trim and in the functional components of 30 automobile brands manufactured in China, including without limitation, Audi, Mercedes Benz, BMW, Toyota, Buick, Chevrolet, Mazda, Volvo, Ford, Citroen, Jinbei and VW Passat, Golf, Jetta, etc. The Company's wholly-owned research center is dedicated to the research and development of polymer composites materials and benefits from its cooperation with well-known scientists from prestigious universities in China. As of September 30, 2017, 432 of the Company's products have been certified for use by one or more of the automobile manufacturers in China. For more information, please visit the Company's English website at http://chinaxd.irpass.com/, and the Chinese website at http://www.xdholding.com.

Safe Harbor Statement

This announcement contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements other than statements of historical fact in this announcement are forward-looking statements, including but not limited to, the Company's growth potential in international markets; the effectiveness and profitability of the Company's product diversification strategy; the impact of the Company's product mix shift to more advanced products and related pricing policies; the effectiveness, profitability, and the marketability of its the ongoing mix shift to more advanced products; the prospects of the Company's Dubai facility, and the associated expansion into Middle East, Europe and other parts of Asia; the prospects of the Company's Sichuan facility, and its penetration into Southwest China; the prospects of the Company's Harbin facility, and its penetration into Northeast China; the Company's projections of its revenues for performance in fiscal 2017. These forward-looking statements can be identified by terminology such as "will," "expect," "project," "anticipate," "forecast," "plan," "believe," "estimate" and similar statements. Forward-looking statements involve inherent risks and uncertainties and are based on current expectations, assumptions, estimates and projections about the Company and the industry. A number of important factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statement. Potential risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, the global economic uncertainty could further impair the automotive industry and limit demand for our products; fluctuations in automotive sales and production could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations and liquidity; our financial performance may be affected by the prospect of our Dubai facility and the associated expansion into Middle East, Europe and other parts of Asia; the withdrawal of preferential government policies and the tightening control over the Chinese automotive industry and automobile purchase restrictions imposed in certain major cities may limit market demand for our products; the slowing of Chinese automotive industry's growth; the concentration of our distributors, customers and suppliers; and other risks detailed in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission and available on its website at http://www.sec.gov. The Company undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent occurring events or circumstances, or to changes in its expectations, except as may be required by law. Although the Company believes that the expectations expressed in these forward looking statements are reasonable, it cannot assure you that its expectations will turn out to be correct, and investors are cautioned that actual results may differ materially from the anticipated results.

Contacts:

China XD Plastics

Mr. Taylor Zhang, CFO (New York) Phone: +1 (212) 747-1118 Email: cxdc@chinaxd.net

Investor Relations: Citigate Dewe Rogerson

Ms. Vivian Chen, Managing Director US: +1 (347) 481-3711 Email: Vivian.chen@citigatedr.com

Financial Tables Follow -

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