AkzoNobel delivers on 15-by-20 promise and continues strong momentum in Q4, with 6% revenue growth in comparable currencies



AMSTERDAM, The Netherlands, February 19, 2021, – / African Media Agency (AMA) / –
Akzo Nobel NV (AKZA; AKZOY) Releases Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2020 Results

Highlights of the whole year 2020
* 15.0% ROS excluding unallocated cost1, fulfilling our 15 by 20 promise
* ROI excluding unallocated cost2 up to 20.6%, exceeding our 2020 ambition
* 243 million euros of cost savings, of which 115 million euros of structural savings
* Net cash from operating activities increased significantly to € 1,220 million
* Share repurchase of 545 million euros in 2020

* Announced the buyback of shares worth 1,000 million euros, to be completed in the first quarter of 2022
* Final proposed dividend of € 1.52 (2019: € ​​1.49) per share

Highlights of the fourth quarter of 2020
* Strong volume growth of 6%; second consecutive quarter of volume growth
* ROS excluding unallocated cost increased to 15.3% (2019: 11.0%) due to strong margin management and cost savings
* Total cost savings 34 million euros, of which 25 million euros of structural savings related to transformation initiatives.
* The acquisitions of Titan Paints in Spain were announced and the new nautical coatings were completed in the fourth quarter of 2020

AkzoNobel CEO Thierry Vanlancker commented:
“Our 2020 results demonstrate an improvement in structural performance from the first phase of our transformation. Despite the headwinds from COVID-19, we accepted the challenge and delivered on our 15 by 20 promise, achieving a 15% return on sales and more than 20% return on investment.

“We continue to take care of our customers and everyone at AkzoNobel deserves enormous credit for their passion and commitment, especially in such a challenging year. We have now achieved organic growth for two quarters in a row and have announced acquisitions including Titan Paints in Spain and New Nautical Coatings in the US We transform our systems and processes and expand our industry-leading Paint the Future innovation ecosystem. We have also accelerated our People. Planet. Painting. focus towards sustainability and has been recognized by major benchmarks as the leader in the paint and coatings industry.

“What is really exciting is that we are literally in the middle of our transformation to regain our position as a benchmark in the industry. Our new Grow & Deliver strategy represents the second stage of our journey, which began in 2017, to double AkzoNobel’s profits. ”

Recent highlights

Clients with a new window of opportunity
Window manufacturers can now make their production process more efficient and sustainable after we launch a new instant dry solution. RUBBOL’s range of 100% UV-cured Sikkens exterior wood coatings is the first of its kind and can reduce up to 16 hours of drying time. This means significant savings in production time and energy costs, as well as leading performance.

Sustainability ambitions heat up
Thousands of solar panels have been installed at two of our sites on two continents as we continue to accelerate toward our ambition to cut carbon emissions in half by 2030. The two recent projects were carried out in Garcia, Mexico, where they installed 1,650 solar panels. – and Barcelona, ​​Spain, where work to install 1,600 ceiling panels is underway. As part of our People. Planet. Painting. sustainability ambitions, we want to reduce our energy use by 30% and increase our use of renewable electricity to 100%.

The new bio-based paint is a breath of fresh air
We have launched a new bio-based wall paint in Vietnam. Dulux Better Living Air Clean BioBased has been enhanced with Pure Air technology. Contains sustainable natural ingredients, like bamboo charcoal, to create a better living environment.

Creating the most colorful airplane in South America
Our Coral brand in Brazil partnered with colleagues from Aerospace Coatings to help create the most colorful aircraft in South America. They worked with Azul Airlines and Embraer to pay tribute to Spix’s Macaw, a national symbol in Brazil. The design features 58 colors, half of which were custom made.

China to host 2021 Paint the Future kick-off challenge
Forging an even stronger connection with startups in a key market, AkzoNobel will launch its next regional startup challenge in China in March 2021. The challenge joins a series of programs for startups, academia, research institutes and suppliers. to collaborate and test, launch and scale. revolutionary solutions together with AkzoNobel. The company launched Paint the Future in 2019 with an industry global startup challenge. In 2020, he organized the first regional startup challenge in Brazil. Now it is preparing to shake things up with startups in China, a country renowned for technological innovation.

The advance of biomass opens up a world of possibilities
A groundbreaking innovation involving a more sustainable method of making resins has been discovered thanks to a research collaboration between AkzoNobel and the Advanced Research Center Netherlands Chemical Building Blocks Consortium (ARC CBBC). The new process involves the use of bio-based monomers to make resins, which could pave the way for the introduction of futuristic functions. It’s part of our collaborative approach to innovation, which involves working with startups, academics, research institutes, and vendors to test, launch, and scale game-changing solutions.

Outlook 2021:
AkzoNobel aims to grow at least in line with its relevant markets. Although trends differ by region and segment with expected commodity inflation, margin management and cost savings programs are in place to generate a 50 basis point increase in sales performance. The company aims for a leverage ratio of 1-2 times net debt / EBITDA and is committed to maintaining a strong investment grade credit rating.

The report for the fourth quarter and full year 2020 can be viewed and downloaded

1 ROS, excluding unallocated cost, is adjusted operating income as a percentage of Decorative Paints and High Performance Coatings revenues; excludes unallocated cost and invested capital
2 ROI excluding unallocated cost is adjusted operating income for the last 12 months as a percentage of average invested capital, for decorative paints and high performance coatings; excludes unallocated corporate center costs and invested capital
3 Constant currency calculations exclude the impact of changes in currency exchange rates
4 Adjusted operating income is operating income excluding identified items.

This is a public announcement from Akzo Nobel NV in accordance with section 17, paragraph 1, of the European Market Abuse Regulation (596/2014).


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