Quarterly Statement Third Quarter 2023

Performance Materials

Performance Materials key data
















3rd quarter 2022


3rd quarter 2023




1st nine months 2022


1st nine months 2023



Sales (external)


€2,330 million


€1,707 million




€7,179 million


€5,288 million



Intersegment sales


€760 million


€542 million




€2,323 million


€1,706 million



Sales (total)


€3,090 million


€2,249 million




€9,502 million


€6,994 million



Change in sales (external)

































































Sales by region (external)















€970 million


€695 million




€3,367 million


€2,347 million





€702 million


€465 million




€1,931 million


€1,430 million





€658 million


€547 million




€1,881 million


€1,511 million





€53 million


€85 million




€1,040 million


€560 million





(€107 million)


(€52 million)




€572 million


€135 million



Cash flows from operating activities2


€227 million


€438 million




€528 million


€483 million



Cash outflows for additions to property, plant, equipment and intangible assets


€134 million


€121 million




€360 million


€300 million



Free operating cash flow2


€93 million


€317 million




€168 million


€183 million




EBIT and EBITDA include the effect on earnings of intersegment sales.


An imputed tax rate of 25% has been used since the Annual Report 2022 to calculate income taxes paid by the reportable segments; see note 4 “Segment and Regional Reporting” in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in the Annual Report 2022. The tax rate for the reference value has not changed.

In the Performance Materials segment, third quarter sales in 2023 were down 26.7% to €1,707 million (previous year: €2,330 million). This was primarily driven by the 19.9% decline in average selling prices, due in particular to weak demand worldwide. Exchange rate movements also had a decreasing effect of 4.4% on sales. At the same time, a demand-induced downturn in volumes sold had a negative impact on sales of 2.4%.

Sales in the EMLA region were down by 28.4% from the prior-year quarter to €695 million (previous year: €970 million), driven by a significant drop in the selling price level. Changes in volumes sold and in exchange rates both had a neutral effect on sales. The NA region’s sales decreased 33.8% to €465 million (previous year: €702 million), principally because of a considerable decline in average selling prices. In addition, lower volumes sold had a significant sales-reducing effect. Exchange rate movements also had a slightly negative effect on sales. Sales in the APAC region were down by 16.9% to €547 million (previous year: €658 million). The key drivers here were exchange rate movements and a decrease in sales volumes, each of which drove sales down considerably. Changes in the selling price level had no notable effect on sales.

In the third quarter of 2023, the Performance Materials segment’s EBITDA was up 60.4% on the prior-year quarter, rising to €85 million (previous year: €53 million). This was primarily driven by higher margins, since a decline in average selling prices was more than offset by a drop in raw material and energy prices and lower fixed costs. In contrast, the change in provisions for short-term variable compensation and exchange rate movements had a negative impact on earnings. Lower volumes sold had an additional slightly negative effect on earnings.

In the third quarter of 2023, EBIT improved by 51.4% to €–52 million (previous year: €–107 million).

Free operating cash flow was up, amounting to €317 million in the third quarter of 2023 (previous year: €93 million), primarily driven by an increase in funds freed up from working capital, due above all to changes in inventories. At the same time, a rise in EBITDA and a decline in cash outflows for property, plant and equipment and intangible assets had a positive effect on free operating cash flow.

Comprises all countries in the Asia and Pacific region.
EBIT / Earnings Before Interest and Taxes
Income after income taxes plus financial result and income tax expense.
EBITDA / Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization
EBIT plus depreciation and amortization of property, plant, equipment, and intangible assets.
Comprises all countries in Europe, the Middle East, Latin America (excluding Mexico), and Africa.
FOCF / Free Operating Cash Flow
Operating cash flows (pursuant to IAS 7) less cash outflows for additions to property, plant, equipment and intangible assets.
NA / North America
Region comprising Canada, Mexico, and the United States.