March 11, 2014|P. Carlo Ratto
- Vesuvius Plc. reported a 14 percent jump in pretax profit as margins recovered after the company quit less profitable businesses. Vesuvius, which spun off from Cookson Group in 2012, has also cut costs as it battles a downturn in European and North American steel markets. The company has disposed its low-margin refractory installation business in Canada, closed a steel consumables plant in China, and sold its brick refractories business in Germany. Vesuvius also sold its precious metals processing business last year soon after it sold its money-losing solar crucibles business. Margins grew to 9.3 percent from 8.5 percent a year earlier.
- SGL Group, the Carbon Company/DE, announced the closure of its Italian graphite electrodes plant in Narni (Umbria) and of the related administration office in Lainate. The closure is part of the company’s global realignment strategy and the SGL2015 cost savings program. The market for graphite electrodes has come under pressure from unfavorable price developments and weak demand, in particular.