Ahlstrom generated first-quarter 2011 net sales of $728 million, an increased of 11.5% compared with $653 million in the first quarter 2010.
On a comparable basis, about 10% of the net sales increase was driven by price increases and product mix. Currency effect increased net sales by about 1.5% and higher volumes by about 3%. Divestments of the Dust Filtration business and the Altenkirchen plant announced at the end of 2010
Net sales of the Filtration sector increased 4.2% to $122 million million. Growth was supported by the improved demand in the transportation industry globally as well as increased selling prices to cover higher chemicals and specialty pulp costs.
Food and Medical net sales rose 13.9% to $138 million.The increase was due to the higher volumes of food packaging materials and medical drapes applications as well as increased selling prices. Further price increases have been announced to cover increased raw materials costs.
Home and Personal net sales increased 19.5% to $117 million. The increase was driven by higher volumes, particularly in Europe, as well as increased selling prices. Further price increases have been announced to cover increased raw material costs.
Jan Lång, president/CEO said, “ Our development continued to be positive in the first quarter despite of the persisting raw material cost inflation. Nevertheless, we managed to improve our profitability. Active management of the supply chain cost base, notably in manufacturing and sourcing, improved our competitiveness. Going forward, active pricing management remains among our top priorities in safeguarding our profitability, especially against the increasing chemical and synthetic fiber costs this year.
We launched a new brand identity in February reflecting the company's refined strategy, values and new operating model, as well as a new corporate image.
Our employees at the Louveira filtration plant in Brazil did an excellent job in cleaning up the site after the flood and limiting the damages incurred to a minimum.”