Celanese To Expand Manufacturing Capacity; Street Says Buy
Chemical and specialty materials provider Celanese Corporation has outlined a 3 year plan to enhance its engineered materials compounding capacity in Asia. This includes 2 locations in China and 1 in India. Financial details of the planned expansion were not disclosed.
Celanese’s (CE) Senior Vice President, Engineered Materials, Tom Kelly said, “By continuing to increase our Asia presence in the engineered materials market, Celanese is adapting to local customer needs and gaining a competitive advantage in a complex and changing environment.”
Kelly further added, “Celanese is committed to expanding its leadership position in the region by increasing both compounding and polymer manufacturing capacities and capabilities through greater investments and additions in its Asia network.”
The company also announced GUR ultra high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMW-PE) capacity expansion in Europe with a focus on the EV market. This capacity addition will enable Celanese to address demand for Lithium Ion Battery Separators (LIBS) in the EV space.
Furthermore, Celanese increased its fiscal 2021 financial outlook. It now sees adjusted earnings land between $11 and $11.50 per share. This is a 15% increase over the midpoint of previous outlook of adjusted earnings of between $9.50 and $10. (See Celanese stock analysis on TipRanks)
Last month, Alembic Global analyst Hassan Ahmed reiterated a Buy rating on the stock and raised its price target to $155 (8.5% upside potential) from $135. Commenting on Celanese’s 4Q performance, Ahmed said, “Based on its exposure to both China and the auto end-market, Celanese is well-positioned for continued earnings momentum within the current macro environment- a positive factor that we believe is not being appreciated by the consensus.”
Turning to rest of the Street, the stock has a Strong Buy consensus rating alongside an average analyst price target of $150 (5% upside potential) based on 7 Buys and 1 Hold. Shares have rallied 113.6% over the past year.
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