S-1 1 d681018ds1.htm S-1 S-1
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As filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 14, 2014

Registration No. 333-            

 

 

 

UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

Washington, D.C. 20549

 

 

FORM S-1

REGISTRATION STATEMENT

UNDER

THE SECURITIES ACT OF 1933

 

 

Trinseo S.A.

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

 

 

 

Luxembourg   2821   N/A
(State or other jurisdiction of
incorporation or organization)
  (Primary Standard Industrial
Classification Code Number)
  (I.R.S. Employer
Identification Number)

1000 Chesterbrook Boulevard

Suite 300

Berwyn, PA 19312

(610) 240-3200

(Address, including zip code, and telephone number, including area code, of registrant’s principal executive offices)

 

 

Curtis S. Shaw

Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary

1000 Chesterbrook Boulevard

Suite 300

Berwyn, PA 19312

(610) 240-3200

(Name, address, including zip code, and telephone number, including area code, of agent for service)

 

 

 

Copies to:

Craig E. Marcus

Ropes & Gray LLP

Prudential Tower

800 Boylston Street

Boston, MA 02199

(617) 951-7000

 

Barbara L. Becker

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

200 Park Avenue

New York, NY 10166

(212) 351-4000

 

 

Approximate date of commencement of proposed sale to public:

As soon as practicable after this Registration Statement is declared effective.

If any of the securities being registered on this Form are to be offered on a delayed or continuous basis pursuant to Rule 415 under the Securities Act of 1933, check the following box.  ¨

If this Form is filed to register additional securities for an offering pursuant to Rule 462(b) under the Securities Act, check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering.  ¨

If this Form is a post-effective amendment filed pursuant to Rule 462(c) under the Securities Act, check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering.  ¨

If this Form is a post-effective amendment filed pursuant to Rule 462(d) under the Securities Act, check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering.  ¨

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or a smaller reporting company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer” and “smaller reporting company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.

 

Large accelerated filer   ¨    Accelerated filer   ¨
Non-accelerated filer   x  (Do not check if a smaller reporting company)    Smaller reporting company   ¨

 

 

CALCULATION OF REGISTRATION FEE

 

 

Title of Each Class of

Securities to be Registered

 

Proposed

Maximum

Aggregate

Offering Price(1)

 

Amount of

Registration Fee(1)

Ordinary Shares, par value $0.01 per ordinary share

  $200,000,000   $25,760

 

 

(1) Estimated solely for the purpose of calculating the registration fee in accordance with Rule 457(o) of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, based upon an estimate of the maximum offering price.

 

 

The Registrant hereby amends this Registration Statement on such date or dates as may be necessary to delay its effective date until the Registrant shall file a further amendment which specifically states that this Registration Statement shall thereafter become effective in accordance with Section 8(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 or until the Registration Statement shall become effective on such date as the Securities and Exchange Commission, acting pursuant to said Section 8(a), may determine.

 

 

 


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The information in this preliminary prospectus is not complete and may be changed. These securities may not be sold until the registration statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission is effective. This preliminary prospectus is not an offer to sell nor does it seek an offer to buy these securities in any jurisdiction where the offer or sale is not permitted

 

Subject to Completion, dated March 14, 2014

PROSPECTUS

 

LOGO

Trinseo S.A.

            Ordinary Shares

 

 

This is an initial public offering of ordinary shares of Trinseo S.A., a public limited liability company (société anonyme) existing under the laws of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. All of the                 ordinary shares are being sold by the company.

Prior to this offering, there has been no public market for our ordinary shares. It is currently estimated that the initial public offering price per share will be between $         and $        . Application has been made for the quotation of the ordinary shares on the                 under the symbol “TSE”.

 

 

See “Risk Factors” on page 15 to read about factors you should consider before buying our ordinary shares.

 

 

Neither the Securities and Exchange Commission nor any other regulatory body has approved or disapproved of these securities or passed upon the accuracy or adequacy of this prospectus. Any representation to the contrary is a criminal offense.

 

 

 

     Per
Share
     Total  

Initial public offering price

   $                    $                

Underwriting discount

   $         $     

Proceeds, before expenses, to us

   $         $     

To the extent that the underwriters sell more than                 ordinary shares, the underwriters have the option to purchase up to an additional                 ordinary shares from us at the initial price to public less the underwriting discount.

 

 

 

The underwriters expect to deliver the ordinary shares against payment in New York, New York on                     , 2014.

 

 

 

Goldman, Sachs & Co.   Deutsche Bank Securities   Citigroup   Morgan Stanley
Barclays   BofA Merrill Lynch   HSBC   Jefferies
Mizuho Securities   Scotiabank   SMBC Nikko   Wells Fargo Securities

 

 

Prospectus dated                     , 2014.


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TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

PROSPECTUS SUMMARY

     1  

RISK FACTORS

     15  

CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

     36   

USE OF PROCEEDS

     38   

DIVIDEND POLICY

     39   

CAPITALIZATION

     40   

DILUTION

     41   

SELECTED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL AND OTHER DATA

     43   

MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS

     45   

BUSINESS

     73   

MANAGEMENT

     102   

EXECUTIVE COMPENSATION

     109   

CERTAIN RELATIONSHIPS AND RELATED PARTY TRANSACTIONS

     130   

SECURITY OWNERSHIP OF CERTAIN BENEFICIAL OWNERS AND MANAGEMENT

     133   

DESCRIPTION OF INDEBTEDNESS

     135   

DESCRIPTION OF SHARE CAPITAL

     140   

COMPARISON OF SHAREHOLDER RIGHTS

     148   

SHARES ELIGIBLE FOR FUTURE SALE

     162   

MATERIAL UNITED STATES FEDERAL INCOME TAX AND LUXEMBOURG TAX CONSIDERATIONS

     163   

UNDERWRITING

     171   

LEGAL MATTERS

     177   

EXPERTS

     177   

WHERE YOU CAN FIND MORE INFORMATION

     177   

INDEX TO CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

     F-1   

 

 

We have not authorized anyone to provide any information or to make any representations other than those contained in this prospectus or in any free writing prospectuses we have prepared. We take no responsibility for, and can provide no assurance as to the reliability of, any other information that others may give you. This prospectus is an offer to sell only the shares offered hereby, but only under circumstances and in jurisdictions where it is lawful to do so. The information contained in this prospectus is current only as of its date.

 

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MARKET AND INDUSTRY DATA

We obtained the market, industry and competitive position data presented throughout this prospectus from our own internal estimates and research, as well as from industry and general publications and research, surveys and studies conducted by third parties, including LMC International and IHS Chemical. Industry publications, studies and surveys generally state that they obtained the data used to produce such publication, study or survey from sources believed to be reliable. While we believe that each of these publications, studies and surveys is reliable, we have not independently verified market and industry data from third-party sources. We believe our internal company estimates and research are reliable and the definitions of our market and industry are appropriate. However, neither such research nor these definitions have been verified by any independent source. While we are not aware of any misstatements regarding our market, industry or competitive position data presented in this prospectus, our estimates involve risks and uncertainties and are subject to change based on various factors, including those discussed under the heading “Risk Factors” in this prospectus. As a result, the market, industry and competitive position data included in this prospectus, and estimates and beliefs based on that data, may not be reliable. References in this prospectus to our “leading” market positions and similar disclosures are measured based upon production capacity, which our management believes to be the most reliable available measure of our market position.

TRADEMARKS AND TRADE NAMES

This prospectus includes our trademarks such as TRINSEO™, LOMAX™, TYRIL™, PULSE™, EMERGE™, MAGNUM™, STYRON™, STYRON A-TECH™ and CALIBRE™, which are protected under applicable intellectual property laws and are owned by Trinseo S.A. through its subsidiaries. This prospectus also contains trademarks, service marks, trade names and copyrights of other companies, which are the property of their respective owners. Solely for convenience, trademarks and trade names referred to in this prospectus may appear without the ® or ™ symbols, but such references are not intended to indicate, in any way, that we will not assert, to the fullest extent under applicable law, our rights or the right of the applicable licensor to these trademarks and trade names.

 

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PROSPECTUS SUMMARY

This summary highlights information appearing elsewhere in this prospectus. This summary is not complete and does not contain all of the information that you should consider before investing in our ordinary shares. You should carefully read the entire prospectus, including the financial data and the related notes, the section entitled “Risk Factors” and “Cautionary Note Regarding Forward Looking Statements” before deciding whether to invest in our ordinary shares. Unless otherwise indicated or the context otherwise requires, the terms “Trinseo,” “we,” “us,” “our,” “our Company” and “our business” refer to Trinseo S.A. together with its consolidated subsidiaries. Prior to our formation, our businesses were wholly owned by The Dow Chemical Company. We refer to our predecessor businesses as “the Styron business.” On June 17, 2010, investment funds advised or managed by Bain Capital Partners, LLC acquired the Styron business, and Dow Europe Holding B.V., which we refer to as “Dow Europe,” or, together with other affiliates of The Dow Chemical Company, “Dow,” retained an ownership interest in the Styron business through an indirect ownership interest in us. We refer to this transaction as the “Acquisition.” All information in this prospectus assumes no exercise of the underwriters’ option to purchase additional shares, unless otherwise noted.

Our Company

We are a leading global materials company engaged in the manufacture and marketing of emulsion polymers and plastics, including various specialty and technologically differentiated products. We have leading market positions in many of the markets in which we compete. We believe we have developed these strong market positions due to our technological differentiation, diverse global manufacturing base, long-standing customer relationships, commitment to sustainable solutions and competitive cost positions. We believe that growth in overall consumer spending and construction activity, increased demand in the automotive industry for higher fuel efficiency and lighter-weight materials, and improving living standards in emerging markets will result in growth in the global markets in which we compete. In addition, we believe our increasing business presence in developing regions such as China, Southeast Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe further enhances our prospects.

We develop emulsion polymers and plastics products that are incorporated into a wide range of our customers’ products throughout the world, including tires and other products for automotive applications, carpet and artificial turf backing, coated paper and packaging board, food service packaging, appliances, medical devices, consumer electronics and construction applications, among others. We seek to regularly develop new and improved products and processes, supported by our strong patent portfolio, designed to enhance our customers’ product offerings. We have long-standing relationships with a diverse base of global customers, many of whom are leaders in their markets and rely on us for formulation, technological differentiation, and compounding expertise to find sustainable solutions for their businesses. Many of our products represent only a small portion of a finished product’s production costs, but provide critical functionality to the finished product and are often specifically developed to customer specifications. We believe these product traits result in substantial customer loyalty for our products.

We have significant manufacturing and production operations around the world, which allows us to serve our global customer base. As of December 31, 2013, our production facilities included 35 manufacturing plants (which included a total of 83 production units) at 27 sites across 14 countries, including joint ventures and contract manufacturers. Our manufacturing locations include sites in high-growth emerging markets such as China, Indonesia and Brazil. Additionally, as of December 31, 2013 we operated 11 research and development (“R&D”) facilities globally, including mini plants, development centers and pilot coaters, which we believe are critical to our global presence and innovation capabilities.

We are a global business with a diverse geographic revenue mix and significant operations around the world.

 

 

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LOGO   LOGO

In 2013, we generated net sales of $5,307.4 million, adjusted EBITDA of $303.3 million and a net loss of $22.2 million. Additional information regarding adjusted EBITDA, including a reconciliation of net income (loss) to adjusted EBITDA, is included in “—Summary Consolidated Financial and Other Data.”

We operate in four reporting segments under two business units. Our Emulsion Polymers business unit includes our Latex reporting segment and our Synthetic Rubber reporting segment. Our Plastics business unit includes our Styrenics reporting segment and our Engineered Polymers reporting segment.

 

    Latex: In our Latex segment we produce a broad range of products, including styrene-butadiene latex (“SB latex”), styrene-acrylate latex (“SA latex”), vinylidene chloride latex as well as performance latex products. We are a global leader in SB latex, holding a strong market position across the geographies and applications in which we compete, including the #1 position in SB latex in Europe and the #2 position in North America, based on production capacity. Our customers use SB latex primarily for coated paper used in advertising and magazines, packaging board coatings, carpet and artificial turf backings, as well as a number of performance latex applications. We believe our R&D and formulation capabilities contribute to our strong position. Further, we believe we have strong growth prospects in latex through our leading position in China, where we have recently announced an expansion of our SB latex capacity.

 

    Synthetic Rubber: In our Synthetic Rubber segment we produce styrene-butadiene- and polybutadiene-based rubber products including solution styrene-butadiene rubber, or SSBR, our most advanced rubber technology. SSBR is a critical material for tires with low rolling resistance, which increases fuel efficiency and improves wet-grip and also leads to better traction and safety characteristics. We have a leading market position in SSBR in Europe where tire producers focus on high-performance and ultra high-performance tires and rely heavily on third party rubber producers. Our growth in this segment is also supported by regulatory reforms in the EU, Japan and Korea that are aimed at improving fuel efficiency and reducing carbon dioxide emissions. We have recently doubled our SSBR production capacity to allow us to continue to capitalize on the strong demand growth that we anticipate for this product.

 

   

Styrenics: In our Styrenics segment we produce polystyrene, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (“ABS”) and styrene acrylonitrile (“SAN”) products, as well as our internal production and sourcing of styrene monomer, a raw material common in SB latex, synthetic rubber and styrenics products. We are a leading producer of polystyrene and Mass ABS (“mABS”) where we focus our efforts on differentiated applications such as the liners and encasements of appliances and consumer electronics, including smartphones and tablets. Within these applications, we work collaboratively with customers to develop products that offer superior properties, such as rigidity, insulation and colorability, and, in some cases, an improved environmental footprint compared to general purpose polystyrene or emulsion ABS. We

 

 

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believe our growth prospects in our Styrenics segment are enhanced by recent trends of industry capacity reduction and consolidation. Between 2006 and 2011, approximately 1,000,000 metric tons, or 1,000 kMT, of production capacity was eliminated in the United States and Western Europe (or approximately 20% of 2005 total capacity in those regions). This trend has continued with the recent formation of the Styrolution Group GmbH joint venture, combining certain INEOS and BASF Group assets, and further asset rationalizations by INEOS and Styrolution Group GmbH. We also have a 50% interest in Americas Styrenics LLC, our joint venture with Chevron Phillips Chemical Company, which operates in the North American and Latin American markets and has benefitted from recent consolidation trends in North America.

 

    Engineered Polymers: In our Engineered Polymers segment we produce polycarbonate (“PC”), compounds and blends, and polypropylene compounds. We believe we are a leading global producer of PC and PC blends, and our products are predominantly used in the automotive, consumer electronics, construction, and medical device markets. Many of our PC compounds and blends products are differentiated based on their physical properties, performance and aesthetic advantage. We believe our growth prospects in this segment are bolstered by consumer and manufacturer demands for lighter-weight and impact-resistant products as well as improving utilization rates.

 

    Emulsion Polymers     Plastics  
    Latex     Synthetic Rubber     Styrenics     Engineered Polymers  
 

 


 

Year Ended December 31, 2013


(dollars in millions)

  


  

Net sales

    $1,341.4              $622.1                $2,305.4            $1,038.5        

Operating Income (loss)

    67.7              84.4                135.7            (16.9)       

Adjusted EBITDA1

    106.2              113.5                148.0            1.9        

Adjusted EBITDA Margin1

    7.9%              18.2%                6.4%            0.2%        

Major Products

       
 

 

     
 

 

     
 

•    Styrene-butadiene
latex (“SB latex”)

 

•    Styrene-acrylate
latex (“SA latex”)

 

•    Performance
SB latex

      
  

 

      
  

 

      
  

       
 
 

 

     
 
 

 

     
 
 

 

     
 
 

•    Solution styrene-
butadiene rubber
(“SSBR”)

 

•    Lithium
polybutadiene
rubber (“Li-PBR”)

 

•    Emulsion styrene-
butadiene rubber
(“ESBR”)

 

•    Nickel
polybutadiene
rubber (“Ni-PBR”)

      
  
  

 

      
  
  

 

      
  
  

 

      
  
  

       

 

     
 
 

 

     
 
 

 

     
 

 

•    Polystyrene

 

•    Acrylonitrile-
butadiene-
styrene (“ABS”)

 

•    Styrene-
acrylonitrile
(“SAN”)

 

•    Ignition resistant
polystyrene

 

      

 

      
 
  

 

     
  
  

 

      
  

 

       
 

 

     
 

 

     
 

•    Polycarbonate
resins (“PC”)

 

•    Compounds
and blends

 

•    Polypropylene
compounds

      
  

 

      
  

 

      
  

Major End-Markets

       
 
 

 

     
 
 

 

     

 

     
 

 

     

•    Coated paper and
packaging
board

 

•    Carpet and
artificial turf
backings

 

•    Tape saturation

 

•    Cement
modification

 

•    Building products

      
  
  

 

      
  
  

 

      

 

      
  

 

      

       

 

     

 

     
 

 

     
 

•    Performance tires

 

•    Standard tires

 

•    Polymer
modification

 

•    Technical rubber
goods

      

 

      

 

      
  

 

      
  

       

 

     
 
 

 

     

 

     

 

     
 

 

     
 

•    Appliances

 

•    Building and
construction/
sheet

 

•    Packaging

 

•    Automotive

 

•    Consumer
electronics

 

•    Consumer
goods

      

 

      
  
  

 

      

 

      

 

      
  

 

      
  

       

 

     
 

 

     
 
 

 

     
 
 
 
 
 

•    Automotive

 

•    Consumer
electronics

 

•    Building and
construction/
sheet

 

•    Others (including
consumer goods,
appliances,
medical devices
and electrical  and
lighting)

      

 

      
  

 

      
 
  

 

      
  
  
  
  
  

1  Excludes unallocated corporate expenses of $66.3 million.

 

 

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Our Competitive Strengths

Leading Positions in Consolidating Markets

We have leading positions in several of the markets in which we compete, including the #1 position in SSBR in Europe and the #1 position in SB latex globally, and we are a leading global producer of plastics products, including polystyrene and PC. We attribute our strong market positions to our technologically differentiated products, the scale of our global manufacturing base, our long-standing customer relationships and our competitive cost positions. The markets in which we compete are also highly consolidated and have continued to experience further consolidation over the last several years through the business combinations of BASF Group and Ciba Specialty Chemicals, Yule Catto & Co. plc and PolymerLatex GmbH (currently known as Synthomer plc), Omnova Solutions Inc. and Eliokem International SAS and the formation of Styrolution Group GmbH.

Technological Advantage and Product Innovation

Most of our products are critical inputs that significantly impact the functionality, production costs and quality of our customers’ products. Many of our products are also differentiated by their performance, reliability, customization and value, which are critical factors in our customers’ selection and retention of materials suppliers. For example, our advanced SSBR technology reduces rolling resistance in tires, resulting in better mileage and fuel efficiency and lower carbon dioxide emissions while at the same time improving the tire’s wet-grip, a measure of braking effectiveness and traction. Our technological leadership is supported by product innovations and more than 250 patents and 200 pending patent applications that we own world-wide, covering processes and technologies such as material formulations, material process technologies and various end-use industrial applications for our materials.

Diverse Global Reach with Strong Presence in Emerging Markets

As of December 31, 2013, our production facilities included 35 manufacturing plants (which included a total of 83 production units) at 27 sites in 14 countries, inclusive of joint ventures and contract manufacturers. We believe our diverse locations provide us with a competitive advantage in meeting and anticipating the needs of our global and local customers in both well-established and growing markets. We have a strong presence in Asia and Latin America, where we supply custom formulated latex products both for established and new paper mills, as well as a variety of engineered polymers, synthetic rubber, and other products that are used in a variety of end-markets.

Long-Standing, Collaborative Customer Relationships

We, together with our predecessor Styron business, have had long-standing relationships with many of our customers, helping them to develop and commercialize multiple generations of their products. We believe we have developed strong relationships through our highly collaborative process, whereby we work with our customers, particularly in high-value segments such as SSBR, specialized plastics and performance latex, to develop products that meet their specific needs. As a result of our close collaboration, we have historically achieved a high success rate of retaining customers. As of December 31, 2013, we served approximately 1,300 customers in over 75 countries with no single customer accounting for more than 7.0% of our net sales in 2013.

Attractive Segments and End Markets Experiencing Cyclical Recovery

We serve customers in a diversified mix of end-markets that we believe generally grow in line with global gross domestic product, or GDP. However, over the next several years, we expect the growth rate in our core

 

 

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end-markets to exceed the rate of global GDP growth. We believe that this, when combined with the relatively modest level of capacity additions that have been announced in the marketplace, will result in increased demand for our production capacity and products. Over half of our net sales in 2013 were to customers serving European end-markets, and we expect the continued cyclical recovery in Europe to result in increased demand for many of our products while also increasing utilization rates at our facilities.

Cost Competitive Assets and Raw Material Sourcing

Our products are produced on a global scale with well maintained, productive and cost efficient assets. Our facilities are positioned globally near some of our key customers, markets, or major integrated petrochemical centers or are co-located at large Dow facilities, where we benefit from receiving certain raw materials supplied directly to our facilities by pipeline. We also benefit from existing long-term supply contracts for raw materials including ethylene, butadiene, and benzene. We believe that these factors, combined with favorable asset and raw material utilization rates, provide us with a competitive cost position within the industry.

Experienced Management Team

Our executive leadership team averages over 25 years of industry experience, including leadership positions within our business units, and significant public company leadership experience at other chemical companies.

Our Growth Strategy

We believe that there are significant opportunities to grow our business globally and enhance our position as a leading global materials company engaged in the manufacture and marketing of emulsion polymers and plastics by executing on the following strategies:

Continue Product Innovation and Technological Differentiation

We intend to continue to address our customers’ critical materials needs by utilizing our technological expertise and development capabilities to create specialty grades, new and sustainable products and technologically differentiated formulations. We believe our technological differentiation positions us to participate in attractive, high growth areas of the markets in which we compete. One such area where we believe we have a technological advantage is enhanced SSBR, which includes later generations of SSBR and functionalized SSBR and is used in the latest generation of performance tires. The global market for enhanced SSBR is expected to grow at 9% annually through 2020. We continue to devote significant R&D resources to improving and furthering our SSBR technology and our polybutadiene rubber technologies in order to remain a leader in these markets. We are also working with our industry partners, particularly in the automotive, medical devices and consumer electronics sectors, to develop new advanced plastics with the goal of gaining market share in higher value-added areas of the markets.

Strategically Invest in Attractive Segments of the Market

We plan to make strategic capital investments to extend our leadership in select market segments and meet expected growing demand for our products. For example, we recently doubled our SSBR production capacity by adding 50 kMT of new capacity in 2012 and repurchasing 25 kMT of existing capacity in 2014 at a significant discount to estimated new build costs. We plan to continue to make similar types of strategic investments in attractive segments of the market.

 

 

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Expand and Deepen Our Presence in Emerging Markets

We believe that improving living standards and growth in GDP across emerging markets are creating increased demand for our products. We expect to capitalize on this growth by expanding our customer base and local capabilities to increase our market share across emerging markets including China, Southeast Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. One example is our recent announcement to add an additional 25 kMT of SB latex capacity at our facility in Zhangjiagang, China, which we expect to become operational in the second quarter of 2015. We also expect to leverage our existing technology and platforms to make additional investments in emerging markets to address expected increases in demand for our SSBR, performance latex and plastics products in those geographies.

Opportunistically Pursue Strategic Acquisitions to Extend Leadership Position

We intend to pursue acquisitions and joint ventures that have attractive risk-adjusted returns to extend our leadership positions in what we believe are the more attractive market segments and geographies for us, including emerging markets. We believe that a long-term trend toward consolidation in our industry will continue, which we expect to create opportunities for us given our scale, broad customer base and geographic reach.

Continue to Implement Cost Saving Measures and Focus on Cash Flow Generation

We have a proven track record of offsetting fixed cost inflation with cost saving actions, and we continue to seek to identify incremental cost saving opportunities. In recent years, we have launched several company-wide initiatives to reduce our fixed cost base, and we believe that our current cost structure positions us favorably to compete and grow in the current market environment. In addition, we continue to focus on cash flow generation through disciplined working capital and capital expenditure management.

Our History and Structure

Prior to our formation in Luxembourg in 2010, the Styron business was wholly-owned by The Dow Chemical Company. On June 17, 2010, we were acquired by investment funds advised or managed by Bain Capital Partners, LLC and Dow Europe, which acquired an ownership interest in our parent company and sole shareholder, Bain Capital Everest Manager Holding SCA, which we refer to as our Parent. As of December 31, 2013, Dow Europe held an approximately 6.8% interest in our Parent. We continue to have a significant business relationship with Dow and rely on our agreements with Dow for certain operating and other services, for the supply of raw materials used in the production of our products and for certain intellectual property rights. See “Business—Our Relationship with Dow.”

 

 

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The following chart summarizes our corporate ownership structure as of December 31, 2013, assuming the completion of this offering.

 

LOGO

 

(1) These holding companies include the following entities: Styron Luxco S.à.r.l. (Luxembourg), Styron Holding S.à.r.l. (Luxembourg), Trinseo Materials S.à.r.l. (Luxembourg) and Styron Investment Holdings Ireland (Ireland).

 

(2) Joint venture entity.

 

 

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Risk Factors

An investment in our ordinary shares involves a high degree of risk. You should carefully consider all of the information set forth in this prospectus and, in particular, should evaluate the specific factors set forth under “Risk Factors” including, among others:

 

    Our significant relationship with Dow and our reliance on this relationship for operating and other services, certain raw materials used in the production of our products and certain intellectual property licenses;

 

    As of December 31, 2013, we had total consolidated indebtedness of approximately $1,336.4 million. Our substantial indebtedness could limit our ability to pursue our growth strategy;

 

    Changes in environmental, health and safety regulations, violations of these regulations or other hazards associated with chemical manufacturing could have a material impact on our business;

 

    Our end markets are highly competitive, and we may lose market share to other producers of styrene-based chemical products or to producers of other products that can be substituted for our products;

 

    Volatility in the cost of raw materials that we use for our products, a disruption in the supply of the raw materials or changes in regulatory requirements applicable to our raw materials may adversely affect our financial condition or results of operations; and

 

    Conditions in the global economy and capital markets may adversely affect our results of operations, financial condition and cash flows.

Our Parent

Bain Capital Everest Manager Holding SCA, which we refer to as our Parent, was formed by investment funds advised or managed by Bain Capital Partners, LLC and Dow Europe on June 3, 2010 in connection with the Acquisition and is incorporated under the laws of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Holders of ordinary shares of our Parent include investment funds advised or managed by Bain Capital Partners, LLC, Dow Europe and certain of our executive officers and other employees.

Bain Capital, LLC is a global private investment firm whose affiliates, including Bain Capital Partners, LLC, manage several pools of capital including private equity, venture capital, public equity, credit products and absolute return investments, with over $70 billion in assets under management. Headquartered in Boston, Bain Capital has offices in New York, Palo Alto, Chicago, London, Luxembourg, Munich, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Tokyo, and Mumbai.

Corporate Information

Our global operating center is located at 1000 Chesterbrook Boulevard, Suite 300, Berwyn, Pennsylvania 19312, and our telephone number at this address is (610) 240-3200. We maintain a website at www.trinseo.com. Our website and the information contained on that site, or accessible through that site, are not incorporated into and are not a part of this prospectus.

 

 

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The Offering

 

Ordinary shares offered by us

            shares (or             shares if the underwriters exercise their option to purchase additional shares in full)

 

Option to purchase additional shares

We have granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional             shares

Ordinary shares to be outstanding after

this offering

            shares (or             shares if the underwriters exercise their option to purchase additional shares in full)

 

Use of proceeds

We estimate that the net proceeds from this offering, after deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us, will be approximately $         million (or $             million if the underwriters exercise their option to purchase additional shares), assuming the ordinary shares are offered at $         per ordinary share, the midpoint of the price range set forth on the cover of this prospectus.

 

  We intend to use the net proceeds from the sale of ordinary share by us in this offering to repay approximately $         million of indebtedness and for working capital and general corporate purposes.

 

Principal shareholders

Upon completion of this offering, Bain Capital Everest Manager Holding SCA will continue to beneficially own a controlling interest in us. As a result, we currently intend to avail ourselves of the controlled company exemption under the             rules. See “Management—Board Structure and Committee Composition.”

 

Risk Factors

You should read carefully the “Risk Factors” section of this prospectus for a discussion of factors that you should consider before deciding to invest in our ordinary shares.

 

Proposed symbol

“TSE”

 

 

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Summary Consolidated Financial and Other Data

The following table sets forth our summary consolidated financial and other data as of the dates and for the periods indicated. The statement of operations data and cash flow data for the years ended December 31, 2013, December 31, 2012 and December 31, 2011, and the balance sheet data as of December 31, 2013 and December 31, 2012 presented below have been derived from our audited financial statements and the related notes thereto included elsewhere in this prospectus. The balance sheet data as of December 31, 2011 has been derived from our audited financial statements for such year, which are not included in this prospectus.

This summary consolidated financial and other data should be read in conjunction with the disclosures set forth under “Capitalization” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and the consolidated financial statements and the related notes thereto appearing elsewhere in this prospectus.

 

     Year Ended December 31,  
     2013     2012     2011  
    

(in millions, except per share data)

 

Statement of Operations Data:

      

Net sales(1)

   $ 5,307.4      $ 5,451.9      $ 6,192.9   

Cost of sales(1)

     4,949.4        5,115.2        5,797.3   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Gross profit

     358.0        336.7        395.6   

Selling, general and administrative expenses

     216.9        182.0        308.6   

Equity in earnings of unconsolidated affiliates

     39.1        27.1        23.9   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Operating income

     180.2        181.8        110.9   

Interest expense, net

     132.0        110.0        111.4   

Loss on extinguishment of long-term debt(2)

     20.7        —         55.7   

Other expense (income), net

     27.9        24.0        (20.1
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Income (loss) before income taxes

     (0.4     47.8        (36.1

Provision for income taxes

     21.8        17.5        39.8   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Net income (loss)

   $ (22.2   $ 30.3      $ (75.9
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Weighted average shares

     16,275.3        7,040.9        60.9   

Net income (loss) per share (basic and diluted)

   $ (0.00   $ (0.00   $ (1.25
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Other Financial Data:

      

Cash flows provided by (used in):

      

Operating activities

   $ 211.3      $ 186.1      $ 151.1   

Investing activities

     (33.4     (117.3     (99.1

Financing activities

     (220.2     (77.2     44.9   

Depreciation and amortization

     95.2        85.6        101.6   

Capital expenditures, net of subsidy (6)

     54.8        112.4        99.8   

EBITDA(3)

     226.8        243.4        176.9   

Adjusted EBITDA(3)

     303.3        290.7        340.3   

Latex Segment(4)

     106.2        125.5        121.5   

Synthetic Rubber Segment(4)

     113.5        111.1        174.6   

Styrenics Segment (4)

     148.0        75.9        58.1   

Engineered Polymers Segment(4)

     1.9        32.4        33.7   

Corporate unallocated(5)

     (66.3     (54.2     (47.6

 

 

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     Year Ended December 31,  
     2013      2013
As adjusted(8)
   2012      2011  
     (in millions)  

Balance Sheet Data:

           

Cash and cash equivalents

   $ 196.5          $ 236.4       $ 245.3   

Working capital(7)

     810.2            778.1         765.2   

Total assets

     2,574.8            2,665.7         2,576.6   

Debt

     1,336.4            1,453.6         1,651.4   

Total liabilities

     2,231.6            2,374.0         2,456.0   

Total shareholder’s equity

     343.2            291.7         120.5   

 

(1) Net sales and cost of sales increase or decrease based on fluctuations in raw material prices. Consistent with industry practice and as permitted under agreements with many of our customers, raw material price changes are generally passed through to customers by means of corresponding price changes.
(2) For the year ended December 31, 2011, the loss on extinguishment of debt related to the February 2, 2011 amendment of our Senior Secured Credit Facility. For the year ended December 31, 2013, the loss on extinguishment of debt related to the January 2013 amendment of our Senior Secured Credit Facility and repayment of $1,239.0 million of outstanding term loans under our Senior Secured Credit Facility.
(3) EBITDA, as presented below, is a key metric that is used by our management to evaluate business operating performance, to prepare our annual operating budget, to determine resource allocations, and to evaluate the effectiveness of our business strategies. We define EBITDA as income (loss) from continuing operations before interest expense, net; income taxes; and depreciation and amortization expense.

Adjusted EBITDA is an additional metric that we provide to investors as a useful analytical indicator of our performance and of our ability to service our indebtedness. We define adjusted EBITDA, as income (loss) from continuing operations before interest expense, net; income tax provision; depreciation and amortization expense; asset impairment charges; advisory fees paid to affiliates of Bain Capital Partners, LLC; other non-cash charges and certain other charges that management does not believe are reflective of our core operating performance. Many of these adjustments to net income (loss) relate to strategic initiatives of the Company, including, among other items, divestitures, restructurings of certain operations and various financing transactions. We describe these other costs in more detail below.

 

 

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EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA are non-GAAP financial measures that have limitations as analytical tools to evaluate our financial performance. EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA are not intended to represent cash flow from operations or net income as defined by United States generally accepted accounting principles, or GAAP, and should not be used as an alternative to net income as an indicator of operating performance or to cash flow as a measure of liquidity. Other companies in our industry may define EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA differently than we do. As a result, it may be difficult to use these or similarly-named financial measures that other companies may use to compare the performance of those companies to our performance. We compensate for these limitations by providing the following reconciliation to our net income (loss), which is determined in accordance with GAAP.

 

     Year Ended
December 31,
 
(in millions)    2013     2012     2011  

Net income (loss)

   $ (22.2   $ 30.3      $ (75.9

Interest expense, net

     132.0        110.0        111.4   

Provision for income taxes

     21.8        17.5        39.8   

Depreciation and amortization

     95.2        85.6        101.6   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

EBITDA

   $ 226.8      $ 243.4      $ 176.9   

Loss on extinguishment of long-term debt

     20.7        —          55.7   

Transition, strategic, and other items(a)

     35.8        22.0        94.2   

Fees paid pursuant to Advisory Agreement(b)

     4.7        4.6        5.2   

Equity in earnings of unconsolidated affiliates, net(c)

     (15.6     (6.2     (6.7

Stock-based compensation and other employee costs(d)

     16.4        5.1        32.4   

Foreign currency losses (gains)(e)

     14.5        21.8        (17.4
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Adjusted EBITDA

   $ 303.3      $ 290.7      $ 340.3   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

  (a) These adjustments represent external advisory costs related to the evaluation of strategic initiatives, our initial assembly of a finance, treasury and human resources team, implementation of financial controls as a stand-alone entity and supplemental external consulting resources relating to implementing our financial closing procedures following our separation from Dow. These initiatives and associated costs were incurred by us as a result of our separation from Dow or other strategic initiatives primarily intended to establish and define our ongoing cost and operational structure. For the year ended December 31, 2011, this included $51.3 million of finance related costs, $17.9 million of strategic initiative evaluation costs, $6.6 million of treasury and human resource related costs, and $18.4 million of legal and other duplicative, transitional and one-time related costs. For the year ended December 31, 2012, this included $3.0 million of finance related costs, $14.0 million of strategic initiative evaluation costs, and $5.0 million of legal and other duplicative, transitional and one-time related costs. For the year ended December 31, 2013, this included $0.7 million of finance related costs, $14.3 million of strategic initiative evaluation costs, and $20.8 million of legal and other duplicative, transitional and one-time related costs. The above amounts for 2013 included a $9.2 million impairment charge for fixed assets at our polycarbonate manufacturing plant in Stade, Germany, a $4.2 million loss on the sale of our expandable polystyrene business, and $10.8 million of restructuring charges incurred in connection with the shutdown of our latex manufacturing plant in Altona, Australia.
  (b) Represents fees paid under the terms of our advisory agreement (the “Advisory Agreement”) with Bain Capital Partners, LLC and Portfolio Company Advisors Limited (together, the “Advisors”). See “Certain Relationships and Related Party Transactions—Advisory Agreement and Transaction Services Agreement of this prospectus for further details.
  (c) Represents removal of equity in earnings of unconsolidated affiliates and inclusion of cash dividends received during the historical period. Cash dividends received were $23.6 million, $21.0 million, and $17.2 million for the years ended December 31, 2013, 2012, and 2011, respectively.

 

 

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  (d) For the years ended December 31, 2013, 2012, and 2011, represents stock-based compensation expense of $10.0 million, $7.3 million, and $22.3 million, respectively, and pension and post-retirement costs in excess of cash contributions during the period of $6.4 million, $(2.2) million, and $10.1 million, respectively.
  (e) Represents gains or losses on the remeasurement and settlement of foreign currency transactions and unrealized gains or losses on currency derivatives entered into for the purpose of reducing non-U.S. dollar currency exposure.

 

(4) The following tables present a reconciliation of our net income (loss), which is determined in accordance with GAAP, to EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA, including EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA by segment for the years ended December 31, 2013, 2012 and 2011:

 

For the year ended December 31, 2013

   Latex      Synthetic
Rubber
     Styrenics     Engineered
Polymers
    Corporate
Unallocated
    Total  
     (in millions)  

Net loss

               $ (22.2

Interest expense, net

                 132.0   

Provision for income taxes

                 21.8   

Depreciation and amortization

                 95.2   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

EBITDA

   $ 95.4       $ 113.5       $ 160.7      $ (9.1   $ (133.7   $ 226.8   

Loss on extinguishment of long-term debt

     —           —           —          —          20.7        20.7   

Transition, strategic, and other items (a)

     10.8         —           4.2        9.7        11.1        35.8   

Fees paid pursuant to Advisory Agreement (a)

     —           —           —          —          4.7        4.7   

Equity in (earnings) losses of unconsolidated affiliates, net (a)

     —           —           (16.9     1.3        —          (15.6

Stock-based compensation and other employee costs (a)

     —           —           —          —          16.4        16.4   

Foreign currency losses (a)

     —           —           —          —          14.5        14.5   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Adjusted EBITDA

   $ 106.2       $ 113.5       $ 148.0      $ 1.9      $ (66.3   $ 303.3   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

For the year ended December 31, 2012

   Latex      Synthetic
Rubber
     Styrenics     Engineered
Polymers
    Corporate
Unallocated
    Total  
     (in millions)  

Net income

               $ 30.3   

Interest expense, net

                 110.0   

Provision for income taxes

                 17.5   

Depreciation and amortization

                 85.6   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

EBITDA

   $ 125.5       $ 111.1       $ 82.9      $ 31.5      $ (107.6   $ 243.4   

Transition, strategic, and other items (a)

     —           —           —          —          22.0        22.0   

Fees paid pursuant to Advisory Agreement (a)

     —           —           —          —          4.6        4.6   

Equity in (earnings) losses of unconsolidated affiliates, net (a)

     —           —           (7.0     0.9        (0.1     (6.2

Stock-based compensation and other employee costs (a)

     —           —           —          —          5.1        5.1   

Foreign currency losses (a)

     —           —           —          —          21.8        21.8   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Adjusted EBITDA

   $ 125.5       $ 111.1       $ 75.9      $ 32.4      $ (54.2   $ 290.7   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

 

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For the year ended December 31, 2011

   Latex      Synthetic
Rubber
     Styrenics     Engineered
Polymers
     Corporate
Unallocated
    Total  
     (in millions)  

Net loss

                $ (75.9

Interest expense, net

                  111.4   

Provision for income taxes

                  39.8   

Depreciation and amortization

                  101.6   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

 

EBITDA

   $ 121.5       $ 174.6       $ 72.2      $ 26.3       $ (217.7   $ 176.9   

Loss on extinguishment of long-term debt

     —           —           —          —           55.7        55.7   

Transition, strategic, and other items (a)

     —           —           —          —           94.2        94.2   

Fees paid pursuant to Advisory Agreement (a)

     —           —           —          —           5.2        5.2   

Equity in (earnings) losses of unconsolidated affiliates, net (a)

     —           —           (14.1     7.4         —          (6.7

Stock-based compensation and other employee costs (a)

     —           —           —          —           32.4        32.4   

Foreign currency gains (a)

     —           —           —          —           (17.4     (17.4
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

 

Adjusted EBITDA

   $ 121.5       $ 174.6       $ 58.1      $ 33.7       $ (47.6   $ 340.3   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

  (a) See notes (3)(a) through (3)(e) above for detailed explanations of these items.

 

(5) Corporate unallocated includes corporate overhead costs, loss on extinguishment of long-term debt, and certain other income and expenses not directly related to any of the reportable segments.

 

(6) Represents capital expenditures, net of government subsidies received for SSBR expansion of $18.8 million, $6.1 million, and $0 for the years ended December 31, 2013, 2012, and 2011, respectively.

 

(7) Working capital is defined as current assets minus current liabilities.

 

(8) As adjusted to reflect (i) the sale of ordinary shares in this offering at an assumed initial public offering price of $             per share, the midpoint of the price range set forth on the cover of this prospectus, after deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us, (ii) the repayment of $             million in aggregate principal amount of our 8.750% Senior Secured Notes due 2019, together with accrued and unpaid interest thereon and (iii) the payment of approximately $             out of available cash to the Advisors in connection with the termination of our Advisory Agreement and our Transaction Services Agreement. See “Related Party Transactions—Advisory Agreement and Transaction Services Agreement.”

 

 

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RISK FACTORS

An investment in our ordinary shares involves various risks. You should carefully consider the following risks and all of the other information contained in this prospectus before investing in our ordinary shares. The risks described below are those which we believe are the material risks that we face. The trading price of our ordinary shares could decline due to any of these risks, and you may lose all or part of your investment in our ordinary shares. See “Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements” elsewhere in this prospectus.

Risks relating to our Business and our Industry

Dow provides significant operating and other services, and certain raw materials used in the production of our products, under agreements that are important to our business. The failure of Dow to perform their obligations, or the termination of these agreements, could adversely affect our operations.

Prior to June 17, 2010, we were operated by Dow, which has provided and continues to provide services under certain agreements that are important to our business. For the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, purchases from and other charges paid to Dow and its affiliated companies (excluding under the Second Amended and Restated Master Outsourcing Agreement, or SAR MOSA, the Amended and Restated MOD5 Computerized Control Software, Licenses and Services Agreement, or AR MOD5 Agreement, and site services agreements) were approximately $2,030.3 million and $2,334.2 million, respectively. For the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, sales to Dow and its affiliated companies were approximately $294.7 million and $311.4 million, respectively. For the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, we incurred expenses totaling $306.2 million and $320.5 million, respectively, under the SAR MOSA, AR MOD5 Agreement, and site services agreements, including $235.1 million and $214.5 million, respectively, for both the variable and fixed cost components of the site service agreements and $71.1 million and $106.0 million, respectively, covering the other two agreements.

We are a party to:

 

    an outsourcing service agreement pursuant to which Dow provides certain administrative and business services to us for our operations;

 

    supply and sales agreements pursuant to which Dow, among other things, provides us with raw materials, including ethylene, benzene, butadiene and bisphenol A, or BPA;

 

    a contract manufacturing agreement pursuant to which Dow operates and maintains one of its Freeport, Texas facilities to produce PC products for us; and

 

    an operating services agreement pursuant to which Dow will operate and maintain certain of our facilities at Rheinmunster, Germany as well as employ and provide almost all of the staff for this facility.

Under the terms of the above agreements, either party is permitted to terminate the applicable agreement in a variety of situations, including in the event of the other party’s uncured material breach, insolvency, change of control or cessation of operations. Should Dow fail to provide these services or raw materials, or should any of the above agreements be terminated, we would be forced to obtain these services and raw materials from third parties or provide them ourselves. Additionally, if Dow terminates agreements pursuant to which we are obligated to provide certain services, we may lose the fees received by us under these agreements. The failure of Dow to perform its obligations under, or the termination of, any of these contracts could adversely affect our operations and, depending on market conditions at the time of any such termination, we may not be able to enter into substitute arrangements in a timely manner, or on terms as favorable to us.

We are party to certain license agreements with Dow relating to intellectual property that is essential to our business. Because of this relationship, we may have limited ability to expand our use of certain intellectual property beyond the field of the license, or to police infringement that may be harmful to our business.

In connection with the Acquisition, we acquired ownership of, or in some cases, a worldwide right and license to use, certain patents, patent applications and other intellectual property of Dow that were used by Dow

 

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to operate our business segments or held by Dow primarily for the benefit of our business segments, prior to the Acquisition. Generally, we acquired ownership of the intellectual property that was primarily used in our business segments and acquired a license to a more limited set of intellectual property that had broader application within Dow beyond our core business segments. Our license from Dow is perpetual, irrevocable, fully paid, and royalty-free. Furthermore, our license from Dow is exclusive within our business segments for certain patents and patent applications that were used by Dow primarily in the Styron business prior to the Acquisition, subject to licenses previously granted by Dow, and to certain retained rights of Dow, including Dow’s retained right to use patents and patent applications outside of our business segments and for internal consumption by Dow. Our license from Dow relates to polymeric compositions, manufacturing processes and end applications for the polymeric compositions; and is limited to use in defined areas corresponding to our current business segments excluding certain products and end-use application technology retained by Dow. Our ability to develop, manufacture or sell products and technology outside of these defined areas may be impeded by the intellectual property rights that have been retained by Dow, which could adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations. Additionally, we may not be able to enforce, and Dow may be unwilling to enforce, this intellectual property that has been retained by Dow where infringement could also impact our business and competitive position.

Our substantial level of indebtedness could adversely affect our financial condition.

We have substantial indebtedness, which, as of December 31, 2013, totaled approximately $1,336.4 million, consisting principally of our 8.750% Senior Secured Notes due 2019, which we refer to as our Senior Notes. On June 17, 2010, we entered into a senior secured credit facility, which we refer to as our Senior Secured Credit Facility, and which included a term loan facility and a revolving credit facility, which we refer to as our Revolving Facility. We repaid all outstanding amounts under the term loan facility in connection with the issuance of our Senior Notes. In January 2013, the Company increased its revolving credit facility borrowing capacity from $240 million to $300 million. As of December 31, 2013, we had no borrowings under our Revolving Facility and $7.3 million in undrawn letters of credit. We are also party to an agreement for an accounts receivable securitization facility, for up to a total of $200.0 million in borrowings. As of December 31, 2013, there was approximately $143.8 million of accounts receivable available to support this facility, based on our pool of eligible accounts receivable and there were no outstanding borrowings. We are also party to a short-term revolving credit facility through our subsidiary in China that provides for approximately $15.0 million of uncommitted funds available for borrowings. Outstanding borrowings under this revolving credit facility were $5.1 million as of December 31, 2013. Our high level of indebtedness could have important consequences, including,

 

    impairing our ability to obtain additional financing for working capital, capital expenditures, debt service requirements or other general corporate purposes;

 

    requiring that a substantial portion of our cash flow be used for debt service payments instead of other purposes, thereby reducing the amount of cash flow available for working capital, capital expenditures, acquisitions and other general corporate purposes;

 

    increasing our vulnerability to economic downturns and adverse industry conditions;

 

    compromising our flexibility to capitalize on business opportunities and to react to competitive pressures, as compared to our competitors;

 

    placing us at a disadvantage compared to other, less leveraged competitors or competitors with comparable debt at more favorable interest rates; and

 

    increasing our cost of borrowing.

In addition, a substantial portion of our current indebtedness is secured by substantially all of our assets, which may make it more difficult to secure additional borrowings at reasonable costs. If we default or declare bankruptcy, after these obligations are met, there may not be sufficient funds or assets to satisfy our subordinate interests, including those of our shareholders.

 

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The terms of our indebtedness restrict our current and future operations, particularly our ability to respond to change or to take certain actions.

Our indenture and the agreement governing our Senior Secured Credit Facility contain a number of covenants imposing significant restrictions on our business. These restrictions may affect our ability to operate our business and may limit our ability to take advantage of business opportunities. These agreements restrict, among other things, our ability to:

 

    sell assets;

 

    incur additional indebtedness or issue certain preferred stock or similar equity interests;

 

    pay dividends;

 

    make investments or acquisitions;

 

    incur liens;

 

    repurchase or redeem capital stock;

 

    engage in mergers or consolidations;

 

    materially alter the business we conduct;

 

    engage in transactions with affiliates; and

 

    consolidate, merge or transfer all or substantially all of our assets.

The ability for us to comply with the covenants and financial ratios and tests contained in our indenture and senior credit agreement, to pay interest on indebtedness, fund working capital, and make anticipated capital expenditures depends on our future performance, which is subject to general economic conditions and other factors, some of which are beyond our control. There can be no assurance that our business will generate sufficient cash flow from operations or that future borrowings will be available under our Senior Secured Credit Facility to fund liquidity needs in an amount sufficient to enable us to service indebtedness. Furthermore, if we need additional capital for general corporate purposes or to execute on an expansion strategy, there can be no assurance that this capital will be available on satisfactory terms or at all.

A failure to repay amounts owed under the Revolving Facility or Senior Notes at maturity would result in a default. In addition, a breach of any of the covenants in the Revolving Facility or the indenture governing our Senior Notes or our inability to comply with the required financial ratios or limits could result in a default. If a default occurs, our lenders could refuse to lend us additional funds and our lenders or noteholders could declare all of our debt and any accrued interest and fees immediately due and payable. A default under one of our debt agreements may trigger a cross-default under our other debt agreements.

To service our indebtedness, we will require a significant amount of cash. If we are unable to execute on our business strategy and generate significant cash flow, we may be unable to service our indebtedness and repay in full the notes at maturity.

To service our indebtedness, we will require a significant amount of cash. Our ability to generate cash flow and service our debt obligations will depend upon, among other things, our future financial condition and operating performance. These factors depend partly on economic, financial, competitive conditions and on certain financial, business, legislative, regulatory and other factors beyond our control. We may not be able to generate sufficient cash from operations to meet our debt service obligations as well as fund necessary capital expenditures.

If our cash flows and capital resources are insufficient to fund our debt service obligations, we could face substantial liquidity problems and could be forced to reduce or delay investments and capital expenditures or to dispose of material assets or operations, seek additional debt or equity capital or restructure or refinance our

 

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indebtedness. We may not be able to effect any such alternative measures on commercially reasonable terms or at all, and, even if successful, those alternative actions may not allow us to meet our scheduled debt service obligations. The Senior Secured Credit Facility and the indenture governing our Senior Notes restrict our ability to dispose of assets and the use of proceeds from those dispositions and may also restrict our ability to raise debt or equity capital to be used to repay other indebtedness when it becomes due. We may not be able to consummate those dispositions or to obtain proceeds in an amount sufficient to meet any debt service obligations then due.

As of December 31, 2013, we had cash and cash equivalents of approximately $196.5 million. If we are unable to meet our debt service obligations under the Senior Notes, the holders of the Senior Notes would have the right following a cure period to cause the entire principal amount of the notes to become immediately due and payable.

Despite our current levels of indebtedness, we may incur substantially more debt, which could further exacerbate the risks associated with our substantial indebtedness.

Although the Senior Secured Credit Facility and the indenture governing our Senior Notes contain restrictions on the incurrence of additional indebtedness, these restrictions are subject to a number of qualifications and exceptions and the indebtedness incurred in compliance with these restrictions could be substantial. Also, we are not prevented from incurring obligations that do not constitute “indebtedness” as defined in the Senior Secured Credit Facility or the indenture, such as operating leases and trade payables. If new debt is added to our current debt levels, the risks related to our substantial indebtedness that we now face could intensify.

Our joint ventures may not operate according to their business plans if we or our partners fail to fulfill our or their obligations, or differences in views among our joint venture partners result in delayed decisions, which may adversely affect our results of operations and may force us to dedicate additional resources to these joint ventures.

We currently participate in a number of joint ventures and may enter into additional joint ventures in the future. The nature of a joint venture requires us to share control with unaffiliated third parties. If our joint venture partners do not fulfill their obligations, the affected joint venture may not be able to operate according to its business plan. In that case, our results of operations may be adversely affected and we may be required to increase the level of our commitment to the joint venture.

Differences in views among joint venture participants and our inability to unilaterally implement sales and productions strategies or determine cash distributions from our joint ventures may significantly impact short- term and longer term financial results, financial condition and the value of our ordinary shares.

Regulatory and statutory changes applicable to our raw materials and products and our customers’ products could require material expenditures, changes in our operations and could adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations.

Changes in environmental, health and safety regulations, in jurisdictions where we manufacture and sell our products, could lead to a decrease in demand for our products. In addition to changes in regulations, health and safety concerns could increase the costs incurred by our customers to use our products and otherwise limit the use of these products, which could lead to decreased demand for these products. Such a decrease in demand likely would have an adverse effect on our business and results of operation. Materials such as acrylonitrile, ethylbenzene, styrene, butadiene, BPA and halogenated flame retardant are used in the manufacturing of our products and have come under increased regulatory scrutiny due to potentially significant or perceived health and safety concerns.

The federal Toxic Substances Control Act, or the TSCA, is the primary law in the U.S. governing the manufacture, processing, use and distribution of our chemicals. Among other things, under TSCA, the EPA has the authority to (i) require testing of chemicals that may present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the

 

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environment or are produced in substantial quantities, (ii) undertake pre-market review of, and impose restrictions as appropriate on, new chemicals prior to their commercial production and introduction into the marketplace, (iii) limit or prohibit the manufacture, use, distribution and disposal of existing substances, (iv) impose reporting and record keeping requirements to ensure continued access to new information on chemical substances, and (v) oversee export and import notice requirements. Other chemical control regimes are in effect in the European Union through its REACH and other laws. These regulatory regimes currently require significant compliance expenditures by us, and changes applicable to our raw materials and products or our customers’ products could require significant additional expenditures by us, or changes in our operations.

Our products are also used in a variety of end-uses that have specific regulatory requirements such as those relating to products that have contact with food or medical device end-uses. We and many of the applications for the products in the end markets in which we sell our products are regulated by various national and local rules, laws and regulations, such as the TSCA. Changes in regulations could result in additional compliance costs, seizures, confiscations, recall or monetary fines, any of which could prevent or inhibit the development, distribution and sale of our products. Changes in environmental and safety laws and regulations banning or restricting the use of these residual materials in our products, or our customers’ products, could adversely affect our results of operations and adversely affect our financial condition. Failure to appropriately manage safety, human health, product liability and environmental risks associated with our products, product life cycles and production processes could adversely impact employees, communities, stakeholders, our reputation and the results of our operations.

We may be subject to losses due to liabilities or lawsuits related to contaminated land we own or operate or arising out of environmental damage or personal injuries associated with exposure to chemicals or the release of chemicals.

The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, or CERCLA, and analogous state and foreign laws are designed to address the problems associated with contaminated land, especially inactive and abandoned hazardous waste sites listed on the “National Priorities List”, or NPL. Under CERCLA and similar statutes, the current or former owner or operator of a property contaminated by hazardous substance releases is subject to strict, unlimited, joint, several and retroactive liability for the investigation and remediation of the property, and also may be liable for natural resource damages associated with the releases. There are several properties which we now own on which Dow has been conducting remediation to address historical contamination. Those properties include Allyn’s Point, Connecticut; Dalton, Georgia; Livorno, Italy; and Guaruja, Brazil. There are other properties with historical contamination that are owned by Dow that we lease for our operations, including our facility in Midland, Michigan. While we did not assume the liabilities associated with these properties in the United States, because CERCLA and similar laws can impose liability for contamination on the current owner or operator of a property, even if it did not create the contamination, there is a possibility that a governmental authority or private party could seek to include us in an action or claim for remediation or damages, even though the contamination may have occurred prior to our ownership or occupancy. While Dow has agreed to indemnify us for liability for releases of hazardous materials that occurred prior to our separation from Dow, the indemnity is subject to monetary and temporal limitations, and we cannot be certain that Dow will fully honor the indemnity or that the indemnity will be sufficient to satisfy all claims that we may incur. In addition, we face the risk that future claims might fall partially or fully outside of the scope of the indemnity, particularly if there is a release of hazardous materials that occurs in the future or at any time after the closing of the Acquisition or if the condition requiring remediation is attributable to a combination of events or operations occurring prior to and after the closing of the Acquisition.

The environmental liabilities at a particular site could increase as a result of, among other things, changes in laws and regulations, modifications to the site’s investigation and remediation plans, unanticipated construction problems, identification of additional areas or quantities of contamination, increases in labor, equipment and technology costs, significant changes in the financial condition of Dow or other responsible parties and the outcome of any related legal and administrative proceedings to which we may become a party. Any increase in liability may be outside the scope of the indemnity provided by Dow, resulting in increased costs payable by us. It is not possible for us to reasonably estimate the amount and timing of all future expenditures related to

 

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environmental or other contingent matters. Accruals for environmental matters are recorded by us when it is probable that a liability has been incurred and the amount of the liability can be reasonably estimated based on current law and existing technologies.

In addition, we face the risk that individuals could seek damages for personal injury due to exposure to chemicals at our facilities, chemicals that have been released from our facilities, chemicals otherwise owned or controlled by us, or chemicals that allegedly migrated from products containing our materials. Risks are inherent in the chemical business, particularly risks associated with safety, health and the environment. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (“EPA”) Risk Management Program (“RMP”) requires facilities that produce, handle, process, distribute or store certain highly hazardous chemicals to develop a risk management plan and program in the event of an accidental release of such chemicals. RMP also requires facilities to assess potential impacts to off-site populations in the event of a credible worst-case release and to document the policies, procedures, equipment and work practices in place to mitigate identified risks. Similar risk management requirements are imposed under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act, which contains chemical emergency response planning, accident release and other reporting and notification requirements applicable to our facility. In addition, we are subject to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration Process Safety Management standard, which requires development of a program to manage workplace risks associated with highly hazardous chemicals. Similar laws apply to many of our international facilities. Failure to comply with such laws could subject us to both civil and criminal penalties, which could affect our product sales, reputation and profitability. We may be subject to claims with respect to workplace exposure, workers’ compensation and other health and safety matters.

Volatility in the cost of the raw materials utilized for our products or disruption in the supply of the raw materials may adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations.

Our results of operations can be directly affected positively and negatively by volatility in the cost of our raw materials, which are subject to global supply and demand and other factors beyond our control. Our principal raw materials (benzene, ethylene, butadiene, BPA and styrene) together represent approximately 75% of our total cost of goods sold. Volatility in the cost of these raw materials makes it more challenging to manage pricing and pass the increases on to our customers in a timely manner. We believe that rapid changes in pricing also can affect the volume our customers consume. As a result, our gross profit and margins could be adversely affected.

Styrene, a principal raw material purchased and produced by us, is used in the production of polystyrene, ABS, SAN, SB latex and our rubber products and, like its principal raw materials, ethylene and benzene, is subject to a volatile market. The wider the styrene to benzene and ethylene spread, with styrene more than benzene and ethylene, the more profitable it is to produce styrene. In 2013, the market experienced a favorable benzene over ethylene spread but that condition is subject to fluctuations.

Crude oil prices also impact our raw material costs. Generally, higher crude oil prices lead to higher costs of raw materials, although some raw materials are impacted less than others.

Market volatility also impacts our accounting for our inventories. We use either our cost to us or market price, whichever is lower, with cost being determined on the first-in, first-out (“FIFO”) method. As a result, in periods of rapidly declining cost of inventories, the FIFO impact on our reported earnings may be negative. Similarly, in periods of rapidly increasing cost of inventories, the effects of the FIFO method could skew our results of operations, causing them to appear more positive than the actual results.

If the availability of any of our principal raw materials is limited, we may be unable to produce some of our products in the quantities demanded by our customers, which could have an adverse effect on plant utilization and our sales of products requiring such raw materials.

Butadiene prices have been highly volatile over the past three years. In some cases, market participants have had difficulty securing their supply. While butadiene supply over the past year has not been limited, this trend could reverse with increases in rubber demand.

 

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Suppliers may have temporary limitations preventing them from meeting our butadiene requirements, and we may not be able to obtain substitute supplies of butadiene from alternative suppliers in a timely manner or on favorable terms. The quantity of butadiene available in any one region is dependent on the raw material inputs and operating rates of the ethylene crackers. Raw material inputs to the crackers (either ethane or naphtha) depend on the flexibility of the cracker to use various feeds and the economics of the available raw materials.

In June 2010, we entered into long-term supply agreements (5 to 10 years) with Dow for ethylene, benzene, butadiene, BPA and other raw materials amounting to approximately 45% to 50% of our raw materials (based on aggregate purchase price). The remainder is purchased via other third-party suppliers on a global basis. As our Dow contracts and other third party contracts expire, we may be unable to renew these contracts or obtain new long-term supply agreements on terms comparable or favorable to us, depending on market conditions, which may significantly impact our operations.

In addition, many of our long-term contracts contain provisions that allow our suppliers to limit the amount of raw materials shipped to us below the contracted amount in force majeure circumstances. If we are required to obtain alternate sources for raw materials because Dow or any other supplier is unwilling or unable to perform under raw material supply agreements or if a supplier terminates its agreements with us, we may not be able to obtain these raw materials from alternative suppliers in a timely manner or be able to enter into long-term supply agreements on terms comparable or favorable to us.

Hazards associated with chemical manufacturing could adversely affect our operations.

Due to the nature of our business, we are exposed to the hazards associated with chemical manufacturing and the related storage and transportation of raw materials, products and wastes. These hazards could lead to an interruption or suspension of operations and have an adverse effect on the productivity and profitability of a particular manufacturing facility or on us as a whole. Potential hazards include the following: piping or storage tank leaks and ruptures; mechanical failures; employee exposure to hazardous substances; and chemical spills and other discharges or releases of toxic or hazardous substances or gases. There is also a risk that one or more of our key raw materials or one or more of our products may be found to have currently unrecognized toxicological or health-related impact on the environment or on our customers or employees. Such hazards may cause personal injury and loss of life, damage to property and contamination of the environment, which could lead to government fines or work stoppage injunctions and lawsuits by injured persons. If such actions are determined to be adverse to us, we may have inadequate insurance to cover such claims, or we may have insufficient cash flow to pay for such claims. Such outcomes could adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations.

Our end markets are highly competitive, and we may lose market share to other producers of styrene-based chemical products or to producers of other products that can be substituted for our products.

Our industry is highly competitive and we face significant competition from large international producers, as well as from smaller regional competitors. Our most significant competitors include BASF Group, Zeon Corporation, LG Chem Ltd, Wacker Chemie AG, Bayer MaterialScience AG, Lanxess AG, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation, Styrolution Group GmbH, Total S.A. and Versalis S.p.A. Competition is based on a number of factors, such as product quality, service and price. Our competitors may improve their competitive position in our core end-use markets by successfully introducing new products, improving their manufacturing processes or expanding their capacity or manufacturing facilities. In addition, while we benefited in 2013 from the general decline of the Butadiene price, the price of Styrene, one of our principal SB latex raw materials, generally rose. This may enable other latex manufacturers who, like us, are offering products made with different chemistries using less expensive raw materials, such as VAM-based latex and natural binders, to improve their positions. The long-term impact of the competition from these products, in particular relative to natural binders, is unclear. Some of our competitors may be able to drive down prices for our products if their costs are lower than our costs. Some of our competitors’ financial, technological and other resources may be greater than our resources and such competitors may be better able to withstand changes in market condition. Our competitors may be able to respond more quickly than we can to

 

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new or emerging technologies or changes in customer requirements. If we are unable to keep pace with our competitors’ product and manufacturing process innovations, our financial condition and results of operations could be materially adversely affected.

Competition between styrene-based chemical products and other products within the end markets in which we compete is intense. Increased competition from existing or newly developed products may reduce demand for our products in the future and our customers may decide on alternate sources to meet their requirements.

In addition, consolidation of our competitors or customers may result in reduced demand for our products or make it more difficult for us to compete with our competitors. If we are unable to successfully compete with other producers of styrene-based chemical products or if other products can be successfully substituted for our products, our sales may decline.

Compliance with extensive and evolving environmental, health and safety laws may require substantial expenditures.

We use large quantities of hazardous substances, generate hazardous wastes and emit wastewater and air pollutants in our manufacturing operations. Consequently, our operations are subject to extensive environmental, health and safety laws and regulations at both the national and local level in multiple jurisdictions. Many of these laws and regulations have become more stringent over time and the costs of compliance with these requirements may increase, including costs associated with any capital investments for pollution control facilities. In addition, our production facilities require operating permits that are subject to periodic renewal and, in circumstances of noncompliance, may be subject to revocation. The necessary permits may not be issued or continue in effect, and any issued permits may contain more stringent limitations that restrict our operations or that require further expenditures to meet the permit requirements.

This emerging focus on climate change in the U.S. and European Union could result in new, potentially diverging or inconsistent, environmental regulations that may negatively affect us. Additional future regulation of greenhouse gases in the U.S. could occur pursuant to future international treaty obligations, regulatory changes under the federal Clean Air Act or other existing legislation, federal, state or regional adoption of greenhouse gas regulatory schemes, or any combination of the foregoing or otherwise. This could cause us to incur additional costs in complying with any new regulations, which may adversely impact our operations and financial condition.

For example, in the United States, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, has moved forward on requirements for new air emission regulations covering greenhouse gas emissions from large sources. European plants that manufacture “organic commodity chemicals” with a capacity of over 100 metric tons per day are required to participate in the European Trading Scheme for Greenhouse gases, and the German greenhouse gas trading program is costly to implement at certain German facilities.

Compliance with more stringent environmental requirements would likely increase our costs of transportation and storage of raw materials and finished products, as well as the costs of storage and disposal of wastes. Additionally, we may incur substantial costs, including penalties, fines, damages, criminal or civil sanctions and remediation costs, or experience interruptions in our operations for failure to comply with these laws or permit requirements.

Conditions in the global economy and capital markets may adversely affect our results of operations, financial condition and cash flows.

Our products are sold in markets that are sensitive to changes in general economic conditions, such as sales of automotive and construction products. Downturns in general economic conditions can cause fluctuations in demand for our products, product prices, volumes and margins. A decline in the demand for our products or a shift to lower-margin products due to deteriorating economic conditions could adversely affect sales of our products and our profitability and could also result in impairments of certain of our assets.

 

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Our business and operating results were severely affected by the global recession beginning in 2008. We continue to be impacted by turbulence in the credit markets, dislocations in the housing and commercial real estate markets, fluctuating commodity prices, volatile exchange rates and other challenges currently affecting the global economy and our customers. Instability in financial and commodity markets throughout the world has caused, among other things, severely diminished liquidity and credit availability, rating downgrades of certain investments and declining valuations and pricing volatility of others, volatile energy and raw materials costs, geopolitical issues and failure and the potential failure of major financial institutions. In addition, the on-going sovereign debt crisis affecting various countries in the European Union is creating further uncertainties in the global credit markets. Deterioration in the financial and credit market heightens the risk of customer bankruptcies and delay in payment. We are unable to predict the duration of the current economic conditions or their effects on financial markets, our business and results of operations. If economic conditions further deteriorate, our results of operations, financial condition and cash flows could be materially adversely affected.

Production at our manufacturing facilities could be disrupted for a variety of reasons. Disruptions could expose us to significant losses or liabilities.

The hazards and risks of disruption associated with chemical manufacturing and the related storage and transportation of raw materials, products and wastes exist in our operations and the operations of other occupants with whom we share manufacturing sites. These potential risks of disruption include, but are not necessarily limited to:

 

    pipeline and storage tank leaks and ruptures;

 

    explosions and fires;

 

    inclement weather and natural disasters;

 

    terrorist attacks;

 

    failure of mechanical, process safety and pollution control equipment;

 

    chemical spills and other discharges or releases of toxic or hazardous substances or gases; and

 

    exposure to toxic chemicals.

These hazards could expose employees, customers, the community and others to toxic chemicals and other hazards, contaminate the environment, damage property, result in personal injury or death, lead to an interruption or suspension of operations, damage our reputation and adversely affect the productivity and profitability of a particular manufacturing facility or us as a whole, and result in the need for remediation, governmental enforcement, regulatory shutdowns, the imposition of government fines and penalties and claims brought by governmental entities or third parties. Legal claims and regulatory actions could subject us to both civil and criminal penalties, which could affect our product sales, reputation and profitability. We have comprehensive environmental, health and safety compliance and management systems to prevent potential risks and emergency response and crisis management plans in place to mitigate potential risks.

If disruptions occur, alternative facilities with sufficient capacity or capabilities may not be available, may cost substantially more or may take a significant time to start production. Each of these scenarios could negatively affect our business and financial performance. If one of our key manufacturing facilities is unable to produce our products for an extended period of time, our sales may be reduced by the shortfall caused by the disruption and we may not be able to meet our customers’ needs, which could cause them to seek other suppliers. Furthermore, to the extent a production disruption occurs at a manufacturing facility that has been operating at or near full capacity, the resulting shortage of our product could be particularly harmful because production at the manufacturing facility may not be able to reach levels achieved prior to the disruption.

Although we maintain property, business interruption, comprehensive general liability, environmental impairment liability and other insurance of the types and in the amounts that we believe are customary for the industry, we may not be fully insured against all potential causes of disruption due to limitations and exclusions

 

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in our policies. While the hazards associated with chemical manufacturing have not resulted in incidents that have significantly disrupted our operations or exposed us to significant losses or liabilities since the Acquisition, there can be no assurances we will not suffer such losses in the future.

Any increase in the cost of natural gas or electricity may adversely affect our results of operations.

We use natural gas and electricity to operate our facilities and generate heat and steam for our various manufacturing processes. Natural gas prices have experienced significant volatility in the past several years. Wide fluctuations in natural gas prices may result from relatively minor changes in supply and demand, market uncertainty, and other factors, both domestic and foreign, that are beyond our control. In addition, natural gas is often a substitute for petroleum-based energy supplies. Future increases in the price of petroleum (resulting from increased demand, political instability or other factors) may result in significant additional increases in the price of natural gas. In addition, electricity prices are generally affected by increases in the price of petroleum. Any increase in the cost of natural gas or electricity could have a material adverse impact on our financial condition and results of operations.

There is no assurance that we will be able to renew all necessary licenses, certificates, approvals and permits for our operations.

Our operation is subject to various licenses, certificates, approvals and permits in different foreign jurisdictions. There is no assurance that we will be able to renew our licenses, certificates, approvals and permits upon their expiration. The eligibility criteria for such license, certificates, approvals and permits may change from time to time and may become more stringent. In addition, new requirements for licenses, certificates, approvals and permits my come into effect in the future. The introduction of any new and/or more stringent laws, regulation, licenses, certificates, approvals and permits requirements relevant to our business operations may significantly escalate our compliance and maintenance costs or may preclude us to continue with our existing operation or may limit or prohibit us from expanding our business. Any such event may have an adverse effect to our business, financial results and future prospects.

Failure to maintain an effective system of internal controls could adversely impact our ability to both timely and accurately report our financial results.

We have established and maintain internal controls necessary to provide reliable financial results and to assist in the effective prevention of fraud. We have experienced material weaknesses in our internal controls in prior years caused by inadequate internal staffing and skills and inadequate controls over our quarter-end closing processes partially related to our transition from Dow. We remediated our prior material weaknesses as of December 31, 2012 and have no newly identified material weaknesses as of December 31, 2013.

We continue to evaluate and enhance our internal controls over financial reporting, including with respect to our separation from Dow. However, we cannot assure you that any measures we have taken to date, or any measures we may take in the future, will be sufficient to avoid potential control deficiencies which could materially adversely affect our ability to comply with applicable financial reporting requirements.

Our business involves risk of exposure to product liability claims.

Even though we are generally a materials supplier rather than a manufacturer of finished goods, the development, manufacture and sales of specialty emulsion polymers and plastics by us involve inherent risks of exposure to product liability claims, product recalls and related adverse publicity. While we attempt to protect ourselves from such claims and exposures in our adherence to standards and specifications and contractual negotiations, there can be no assurance that our efforts in this regard will ultimately protect us from any such claims. For instance, a customer may attempt to seek contribution from us due to a product liability claim brought against them by a consumer, or a consumer may bring a product liability claim directly against us. A product liability claim or judgment against us could result in substantial and unexpected expenditures, affect consumer or customer confidence in our products, and divert management’s attention from other responsibilities. A successful

 

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product liability claim or series of claims against us in excess of our insurance coverage payments, for which we are not otherwise indemnified, could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition or results of operations.

The insurance that we maintain may not fully cover all potential exposures.

We maintain insurance typical of similarly situated companies in our industry but such insurance may not cover all risks associated with the operation of our business or our manufacturing process and the related use, storage and transportation of raw materials, products and wastes in or from our manufacturing sites or our distribution centers. While we have purchased what we deem to be adequate limits of coverage and broadly worded policies, our coverage is subject to limitations, including higher self-insured retentions or deductibles and maximum limits and liabilities covered. Notwithstanding diligent efforts to successfully procure specialty coverage for environmental liability and remediation, we may incur losses beyond the limits or outside the terms of coverage of our insurance policies, including liabilities for environmental remediation. In addition, from time to time, various types of insurance for companies in the specialty chemicals industry have not been available on commercially acceptable terms or, in some cases, at all. We are potentially at additional risk if one or more of our insurance carriers fail. Additionally, severe disruptions in the domestic and global financial markets could adversely impact the ratings and survival of some insurers. Future downgrades in the ratings of enough insurers could adversely impact both the availability of appropriate insurance coverage and its cost. In the future, we may not be able to obtain coverage at current levels, if at all, and our premiums may increase significantly on coverage that we maintain.

We are subject to customs, international trade, export control, antitrust, zoning and occupancy and labor and employment laws that could require us to modify our current business practices and incur increased costs.

We are subject to numerous regulations, including customs and international trade laws, export/import control laws, and associated regulations. These laws and regulations limit the countries in which we can do business; the persons or entities with whom we can do business; the products which we can buy or sell; and the terms under which we can do business, including anti-dumping restrictions. In addition, we are subject to antitrust laws and zoning and occupancy laws that regulate manufacturers generally and/or govern the importation, promotion and sale of our products, the operation of factories and warehouse facilities and our relationship with our customers, suppliers and competitors. If any of these laws or regulations were to change or were violated by our management, employees, suppliers, buying agents or trading companies, the costs of certain goods could increase, or we could experience delays in shipments of our goods, be subject to fines or penalties, or suffer reputational harm, which could reduce demand for our products and hurt our business and negatively impact results of operations. In addition, in some areas we benefit from certain trade protections, including anti-dumping protection and the European Union’s Authorized Economic Operator program, which provides expedited customs treatment for materials crossing national borders. If we were to lose these protections, our results of operations could be adversely affected.

In addition, changes in statutory minimum wage laws and other laws relating to employee benefits could cause us to incur additional wage and benefits costs, which could negatively impact our profitability.

Legal requirements are frequently changed and subject to interpretation, and we are unable to predict the ultimate cost of compliance with these requirements or their effects on our operations. We may be required to make significant expenditures or modify our business practices to comply with existing or future laws and regulations, which may increase our costs and materially limit our ability to operate our business.

We are dependent on the continued service and recruitment of key executives, the loss of any of whom could adversely affect our business.

Our performance is substantially dependent on the performance of our senior management team, including Christopher D. Pappas, our President and Chief Executive Officer and John A. Feenan, our Executive Vice

 

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President and Chief Financial Officer. We have entered into agreements with each member of our senior management team that restrict their ability to compete with us should they decide to leave our Company. Even though we have entered into these agreements, we cannot be sure that any member of our senior management team will remain with us, or that they will not seek to compete with us in the future. The loss of members of our senior management team or our inability to hire qualified management personnel in a timely manner could impair our ability to execute our business plan and growth strategy, cause us to lose customers and reduce revenue, or lead to employee morale problems and/or the loss of additional key employees.

Fluctuations in currency exchange rates may significantly impact our results of operations and may significantly affect the comparability of our results between financial periods.

Our operations are conducted by subsidiaries in many countries. The results of the operations and the financial position of these subsidiaries are reported in the relevant foreign currencies and then translated into U.S. dollars at the applicable exchange rates for inclusion in our consolidated financial statements. The main currencies to which we are exposed are the euro, the British pound, Chinese renminbi, Indian rupee, Korean won, Brazilian real and Swedish krona. The exchange rates between these currencies and the U.S. dollar in recent years have fluctuated significantly and may continue to do so in the future. A depreciation of these currencies against the U.S. dollar, in particular the euro, will decrease the U.S. dollar equivalent of the amounts derived from these operations reported in our consolidated financial statements and an appreciation of these currencies will result in a corresponding increase in such amounts. Because some of our raw material costs are procured in U.S. dollars rather than on these currencies, depreciation of these currencies may have an adverse effect on our profit margins or our reported results of operations. Conversely, to the extent that we are required to pay for goods or services in foreign currencies, the appreciation of such currencies against the U.S. dollar will tend to negatively impact our results of operations. In addition, currency fluctuations may affect the comparability of our results of operations between financial periods.

We incur currency transaction risk whenever we enter into either a purchase or sale transaction using a currency other than the local currency of the transacting entity. Given the volatility of exchange rates, there can be no assurance that we will be able to effectively manage our currency transaction risks or that any volatility in currency exchange rates will not have a material adverse effect on our financial condition or results of operations.

We may engage in strategic acquisitions or dispositions of certain assets and/or businesses that could affect our business, results of operations, financial condition and liquidity.

We may selectively pursue complementary acquisitions and joint ventures, each of which inherently involves a number of risks and presents financial, managerial and operational challenges, including:

 

    potential disruption of our ongoing business and distraction of management;

 

    difficulty with integration of personnel and financial and other systems;

 

    hiring additional management and other critical personnel; and

 

    increasing the scope, geographic diversity and complexity of our operations.

In addition, we may encounter unforeseen obstacles or costs in the integration of acquired businesses. Also, the presence of one or more material liabilities of an acquired company that are unknown to us at the time of acquisition may have a material adverse effect on our business. Our acquisition and joint venture strategy may not be successfully received by customers, and we may not realize any anticipated benefits from acquisitions or joint ventures.

We may also opportunistically pursue dispositions of certain assets and/or businesses, which may involve material amounts of assets or lines of business, and adversely affect our results of operations, financial condition and liquidity. If any such dispositions were to occur, under the terms of the credit agreement governing our Revolving Facility and the indenture governing out Senior Notes, we may be required to apply the proceeds of the sale to repay any borrowings under our Revolving Facility or our Senior Notes.

 

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We generally do not have long-term contracts with our customers, and the loss of customers could adversely affect our sales and profitability.

With some exceptions, our business is based primarily upon individual sales orders with our customers. As such, our customers could cease buying our products from us at any time, for any reason, with little or no recourse. If multiple customers elected not to purchase products from us, our business prospects, financial condition and results of operations could be adversely affected.

We could be subject to damages based on claims brought against us by our customers or lose customers as a result of the failure of our products to meet certain quality specifications.

Our products provide important performance attributes to our customers’ products. If a product fails to perform in a manner consistent with quality specifications, a customer could seek replacement of the product or damages for costs incurred as a result of the product failing to perform as designed and marketed. A successful claim or series of claims against us could cause reputational harm and have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations and could result in a loss of one or more customers.

If we are not able to continue the technological innovation and successful commercial introduction of new products, our customers may turn to other producers to meet their requirements.

Our industry and the end markets into which we sell our products experience periodic technological changes and ongoing product improvements. Our customers may introduce new generations of their own products or require new technological and increased performance specifications that would require us to develop customized products. Innovation or other changes in our customers’ product performance requirements may also adversely affect the demand for our products. Our future growth will depend on our ability to gauge the direction of the commercial and technological progress in all key end markets, and upon our ability to successfully develop, manufacture and market products in such changing end markets. We need to continue to identify, develop and market innovative products on a timely basis to replace existing products in order to maintain our profit margins and our competitive position. We may not be successful in developing new products and technology that successfully compete with such materials, and our customers may not accept any of our new products. If we fail to keep pace with evolving technological innovations or fail to modify our products in response to our customers’ needs, then our business, financial condition and results of operations could be adversely affected as a result of reduced sales of our products.

Our business relies on intellectual property and other proprietary information and our failure to adequately protect or effectively enforce our rights could harm our competitive advantages with respect to the manufacturing of some of our products.

Our success depends to a significant degree upon our ability to protect, preserve and enforce our intellectual property and other proprietary information of our business. However, we may be unable to prevent third parties from using our intellectual property and other proprietary information without our authorization or independently developing intellectual property and other proprietary information that is similar to or competes with ours, particularly in those countries where the laws do not protect proprietary rights to the same degree as in the United States. Any inability by us to effectively prevent the unauthorized use of our intellectual property and other proprietary information by others could reduce or eliminate any competitive advantage we have developed, cause us to lose sales or otherwise harm our business. If it becomes necessary for us to initiate litigation to protect our proprietary rights, any proceedings could be burdensome and costly, and we may not prevail.

Any patents we own, or that are exclusively licensed to us, that have been issued or may be issued in the future, may not provide us with any competitive advantage and may be challenged by third parties. Our competitors or others also may seek to oppose or challenge the validity of our pending patent applications or issued patents. Our competitors also may attempt to design around our patents or copy or otherwise obtain and use our intellectual property and other proprietary information. Moreover, our competitors may already hold or have applied for patents in the United States or other countries in which we operate that, if enforced following

 

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their issuance, could possibly limit our ability to manufacture or sell one or more of our products in the jurisdictions in which such patents are issued. In general, competitors or other parties may, from time to time, assert issued patents or other intellectual property rights against us. If we are legally determined, at some future date, to infringe or violate the intellectual property rights of another party, we may have to pay damages, stop the infringing use, or attempt to obtain a license of such intellectual property from the owner of such intellectual property. With respect to our pending patent applications, we may not be successful in securing patents for the patent claims we are pursuing. Our failure to secure these patents may limit our ability to protect inventions that these applications were intended to cover. In addition, as our patents expire, or are allowed to lapse, in the coming years, we may face increased competition with consequent erosion of profit margins if we are unable to continue to develop innovations for which we are able to secure new patents or we are unable to effectively protect our know how and innovations as trade secrets.

It is our policy to enter into confidentiality agreements with our employees and third parties to protect our confidential proprietary manufacturing know how, technological innovations, proprietary business information and other trade secrets, but our confidentiality agreements could be breached and may not prevent our manufacturing know how and other trade secrets from being misappropriated by others. Adequate remedies may not be available in the event of an unauthorized use or disclosure of our trade secrets and manufacturing know how. Violations by others of our confidentiality agreements and the loss of employees who have specialized knowledge and expertise could harm our competitive position and cause our sales and operating results to decline as a result of increased competition. In addition, others may obtain knowledge of our trade secrets through independent development or other access by legal means.

We have registered and applied for registration of certain service marks and trademarks, and will continue to evaluate the registration and maintenance of additional service marks and trademarks. We have registered the trademark TRINSEO in countries throughout the world and intend to adopt this trademark as a “house” brand for all of our products in the future, however the timing of this rebranding initiative has not yet been determined and we may be required to make marketing and other expenditures in order to complete this rebranding successfully. The applicable governmental authorities may not approve our pending applications. A failure to obtain, or maintain, trademark registrations in the United States and in other countries could limit our ability to protect and enforce our trademarks and impede our marketing efforts in those jurisdictions. Moreover, third parties may seek to oppose our applications or otherwise challenge the resulting registrations. In the event that any of our trademarks are successfully challenged, we could be forced to rebrand our products or lose product differentiations that our use of the trademarks has created in the marketplace, which could result in loss of brand recognition or customer loyalty or goodwill and could require us to devote resources to advertising and marketing new brands and the development of new products.

We may be unable to determine when third parties are using our intellectual property rights without our authorization, particularly our manufacturing processes. In addition, we cannot be certain that any intellectual property rights that we have licensed to third parties are being used only as authorized by the applicable license agreement. The undetected, unremedied, or unauthorized use of our intellectual property rights or the legitimate development or acquisition of intellectual property that is similar to or competes with ours by third parties could reduce or eliminate the competitive advantage we have as a result of our intellectual property, adversely affecting our financial condition and results of operations.

If we fail to adequately protect our intellectual property and other proprietary information, including our processes, apparatuses, technology, trade secrets, trade names and proprietary manufacturing know how, methods and compounds, through obtaining patent protection, securing trademark registrations and securing our trade secrets through the use of confidentiality agreements of appropriate scope and other means, our competitive advantages over other producers could be materially adversely affected. If we determine to take legal action to protect, defend or enforce our intellectual property rights, any suits or proceedings could result in significant costs and diversion of our resources and our management’s attention. We may not prevail in any such suits or proceedings. A failure to protect, defend or enforce our intellectual property rights could have an adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations.

 

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Our products may infringe the intellectual property rights of others, which may cause us to incur unexpected costs or prevent us from selling our products.

We continually seek to improve our business processes and develop new products and applications. Many of our competitors have a substantial amount of intellectual property that we must continually strive to avoid infringing. Although it is our policy and intention not to infringe valid patents of which we are aware, we cannot provide assurances that our processes and products and other activities do not and will not infringe issued patents (whether present or future) or other intellectual property rights belonging to others, either in the United States or abroad. There nonetheless could be third party patents that cover our products, processes or technologies, and it is possible that we could be liable for infringement of such patents and could be required to take remedial or curative actions to continue our manufacturing and sales activities with respect to one or more products that are found to be infringing. We may also be subject to indemnity claims by our business partners arising out of claims of their alleged infringement of the patents, trademarks and other intellectual property rights of third parties in connection with their use of our products. Intellectual property litigation often is expensive and time-consuming, regardless of the merits of any claim, and our involvement in such litigation could divert our management’s attention from operating our business. If we were to discover that any of our processes, technologies or products infringe the valid intellectual property rights of others, we might determine to obtain licenses from the owners of such rights or to modify our processes or technologies or re-engineer our products in order to avoid infringement. We may not be able to obtain the necessary licenses on acceptable terms, or at all, or be able to modify our processes or technologies or re-engineer our products in a manner that is successful in avoiding infringement. Moreover, if we are sued for infringement and lose, we could be required to pay substantial damages and/or be enjoined from using or selling the infringing products or technology. Any of the foregoing could cause us to incur significant costs and prevent us from selling our products and could have an adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations.

Data security breaches could compromise sensitive information related to our business, which could adversely affect our business and our reputation.

Cyber attacks or security breaches could compromise confidential, business critical information or cause a disruption in our operations. We have attractive information assets, including intellectual property, trade secrets and other sensitive, business critical information. We face an ever growing risk of attack from outside our organization (including attack by organized crime, so-called “hacktivists,” and state-sponsored actors) using sophisticated technical and non-technical methodologies (including social engineering and “spear phishing” attacks). We also face risks from internal threats to information security, such as from negligent or dishonest employees or consultants. A successful cyber attack or other breach of security could result in the loss of critical business information and/or could negatively impact operations, which could have a negative impact on our financial results. Furthermore, in addition to using our own systems and infrastructure, we use information systems and infrastructure operated by third party service providers, including Dow. If our third party service providers experience an information security breach, depending on the nature of the breach, it could compromise confidential, business critical information or cause a disruption in our operations.

The labor and employment laws in many jurisdictions in which we operate are more restrictive than in the United States. Additionally, we have unionized employees in the United States who may stage work stoppages. Our relationship with our employees could deteriorate, which could have an adverse effect on our operations.

As a manufacturing company, we rely on our employees and good relations with our employees to produce our products and maintain our production processes and productivity. Approximately 85% of our employees are employed outside of the United States. In certain of those countries, such as the member states of the European Union, labor and employment laws are more restrictive than in the United States. In many jurisdictions, the laws grant significant job protection to employees, which subject us to employment arrangements that are very similar to collective bargaining agreements.

 

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In addition, as of December 31, 2013, approximately 18% of our employees in United States are members of a union and subject to a collective bargaining agreement. We are required to consult with and seek the consent or advice of the unions or works’ councils that represent our employees for certain of our activities. This requirement could have a significant impact on our flexibility in managing costs and responding to market changes. Furthermore, there can be no assurance that we will be able to negotiate labor agreements with our unionized employees in the future on satisfactory terms. If those employees were to engage in a strike, work stoppage or other slowdown, or if any of our other employees were to become unionized, we could experience a significant disruption of our operations or higher ongoing labor costs, which could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations.

As a global business, we are exposed to local business risks in different countries, which could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition or results of operations.

We have significant operations in foreign countries, including manufacturing facilities, R&D facilities, sales personnel and customer support operations. Currently, we operate, or others operate on our behalf, 35 manufacturing plants (which include a total of 83 production units) at 27 sites around the world, including in Brazil, Colombia, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, Finland, Sweden, China, South Korea, Indonesia, Japan and Taiwan, in addition to our operations in the United States. Our offshore operations are subject to risks inherent in doing business in foreign countries, including, but not necessarily limited to:

 

    new and different legal and regulatory requirements in local jurisdictions;

 

    uncertainties regarding interpretation and enforcement of laws and regulations;

 

    variation in political and economic policy of the local governments and social conditions;

 

    export duties or import quotas;

 

    domestic and foreign customs and tariffs or other trade barriers;

 

    potential staffing difficulties and labor disputes;

 

    managing and obtaining support and distribution for local operations;

 

    increased costs of transportation or shipping;

 

    credit risk and financial conditions of local customers and distributors;

 

    potential difficulties in protecting intellectual property;

 

    risk of nationalization of private enterprises by foreign governments;

 

    potential imposition of restrictions on investments;

 

    potentially adverse tax consequences, including imposition or increase of withholding and other taxes on remittances and other payments by subsidiaries;

 

    legal restrictions on doing business in or with certain nations, certain parties and/or certain products;

 

    foreign currency exchange restrictions and fluctuations; and

 

    local economic, political and social conditions, including the possibility of hyperinflationary conditions and political instability.

We may not be successful in developing and implementing policies and strategies to address the foregoing factors in a timely and effective manner at each location where we do business. Consequently, the occurrence of one or more of the foregoing factors could have a material adverse effect on our international operations or upon our financial condition and results of operations.

Our operations in developing markets could expose us to political, economic and regulatory risks that are greater than those we may face in established markets. Further, our international operations require us to comply with a number of United States and international regulations. For example, we must comply with the Foreign

 

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Corrupt Practices Act, or FCPA, which prohibits companies or their agents and employees from providing anything of value to a foreign official or agent thereof for the purposes of influencing any act or decision of these individuals in their official capacity to help obtain or retain business, direct business to any person or corporate entity or obtain any unfair advantage. We operate in some nations that have experienced significant levels of governmental corruption. Any failure by us to ensure that our employees and agents comply with the FCPA and applicable laws and regulations in foreign jurisdictions could result in substantial civil and criminal penalties or restrictions on our ability to conduct business in certain foreign jurisdictions or reputational damage, and our results of operations and financial condition could be materially and adversely affected.

Because a significant portion of our operations is conducted through our subsidiaries and joint ventures, we are largely dependent on our receipt of distributions and dividends or other payments from our subsidiaries and joint ventures for cash to fund all of our operations and expenses, including to make future dividend payments, if any.

A significant portion of our operations is conducted through our subsidiaries and joint ventures. As a result, our ability to service our debt or to make future dividend payments, if any, is largely dependent on the earnings of our subsidiaries and joint ventures and the payment of those earnings to us in the form of dividends, loans or advances and through repayment of loans or advances from us. Payments to us by our subsidiaries and joint ventures will be contingent upon our subsidiaries’ or joint ventures’ earnings and other business considerations and may be subject to statutory or contractual restrictions. We do not currently expect to declare or pay dividends on our ordinary shares for the foreseeable future; however, to the extent that we determine in the future to pay dividends on our ordinary shares, the credit agreement governing our Senior Secured Credit Facility and the indenture governing our Senior Notes significantly restrict the ability of our subsidiaries to pay dividends or otherwise transfer assets to us. In addition, there may be significant tax and other legal restrictions on the ability of foreign subsidiaries or joint ventures to remit money to us.

Our quarterly results of operations are subject to fluctuations due to the seasonality of our business.

Seasonal changes and weather conditions typically affect the construction and building materials end markets. In particular, sales volumes for construction and building materials generally rise in the warmer months and generally decline during the colder months of fall and winter. Abnormally cold or wet seasons may cause reduced purchases from our construction and building materials customers and, therefore, adversely affect our financial results. However, because seasonal weather patterns are difficult to predict, we cannot accurately estimate fluctuations in our quarterly construction and building materials sales in any given year. Because of the seasonality of our business, results for any one quarter are not necessarily indicative of the results that may be achieved for any other quarter or for the full fiscal year.

We have unfunded and underfunded pension plan liabilities. We will require current and future operating cash flow to fund these shortfalls. We have no assurance that we will generate sufficient cash flow to satisfy these obligations.

We maintain defined benefit pension plans covering employees who meet age and service requirements. The majority of these plans are located outside the United States. We have minimum funding requirements for these plans, and may elect to make contributions that do not exceed these minimum requirements. Our net pension liability and cost is materially affected by the discount rate used to measure pension obligations, the longevity and actuarial profile of our workforce, the level of plan assets available to fund those obligations and the actual and expected long-term rate of return on plan assets. Significant changes in investment performance or a change in the portfolio mix of invested assets can result in corresponding increases and decreases in the valuation of plan assets, particularly equity securities, or in a change in the expected rate of return on plan assets and could result in a shortfall. In addition, any changes in the discount rate could result in a significant increase or decrease in the valuation of pension obligations, affecting the reported funded status of our pension plans as well as the net periodic pension cost in the following years. Similarly, changes in the expected return on plan assets can result in significant changes in the net periodic pension cost in the following years.

 

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If our goodwill becomes impaired, we may be required to record a significant charge to earnings.

We are required to test goodwill for impairment at least annually or earlier if events or changes in circumstances indicate the carrying value may not be recoverable. As of December 31, 2013, we had recorded a total of $37.3 million of goodwill. An adverse change in economic or market conditions, changes in technology, changes in competitive conditions and customer preferences, particularly if such changes have the effect of changing one of our critical assumptions or estimates made in connection with the impairment testing of goodwill could result in a change to the estimation of fair value that could result in an impairment charge to our goodwill. Any such material charges may negatively impact our operating results.

Our ability to obtain additional capital on commercially reasonable terms may be limited.

Although we believe our cash and cash equivalents, together with cash we expect to generate from operations and availability under our revolving credit facility, provide adequate resources to fund ongoing operating requirements, we may need to seek additional financing to compete effectively.

If we are unable to obtain capital on commercially reasonable terms, it could:

 

    reduce funds available to us for purposes such as working capital, capital expenditures, R&D, strategic acquisitions and other general corporate purposes;

 

    restrict our ability to introduce new products or exploit business opportunities;

 

    increase our vulnerability to economic downturns and competitive pressures in the markets in which we operate; and

 

    place us at a competitive disadvantage.

Risks Related to this Offering and to our Ordinary Shares

We are a “controlled company” within the meaning of the             listing rules and, as a result, we will qualify for, and intend to rely on, exemptions from certain corporate governance requirements. You will not have the same protections afforded to shareholders of companies that are subject to such requirements.

After the completion of this offering, the Parent will continue to control a majority of the voting power of our outstanding equity. As a result, we are a “controlled company” within the meaning of the corporate governance standards of the exchange on which we list our ordinary shares. Under these rules, a company of which more than 50% of the voting power is held by an individual, group or another company is a “controlled company” and may elect not to comply with certain corporate governance requirements including:

 

    the requirement that a majority of the board of directors consist of independent directors;

 

    the requirement that we have a compensation committee that is composed entirely of independent directors with a written charter addressing the committee’s purpose and responsibilities; and

 

    the requirement for an annual performance evaluation of the nominating/corporate governance and compensation committees.

Following this offering we intend to utilize these exemptions. As a result, we may not have a majority of independent directors, our compensation committee will not consist entirely of independent directors and the board committees will not be subject to annual performance evaluations. Accordingly, you will not have the same protections afforded to shareholders of companies that are subject to all of the corporate governance requirements of the            .

Our Parent, however, is not subject to any contractual obligation to retain its controlling interest, except that it has agreed, subject to certain exceptions, not to sell or otherwise dispose of any ordinary shares or other equity securities or other securities exercisable or convertible therefore for a period of at least 180 days after the date of

 

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this prospectus without the prior written consent of                     . Except for this brief period, there can be no assurance as to the period of time during which the Parent will maintain its ownership of our ordinary shares following the offering.

Our share price could be extremely volatile, and, as a result, you may not be able to resell your ordinary shares at or above the price you paid for them.

Since our inception, there has not been a public market for our ordinary shares, and an active public market for our ordinary shares may not develop or be sustained after this offering. In addition, the stock market in general has been highly volatile. As a result, the market price of our ordinary shares is likely to be similarly volatile, and investors in our ordinary shares may experience a decrease, which could be substantial, in the value of their ordinary shares, including decreases unrelated to our operating performance or prospects, and could lose part or all of their investment. The price of our ordinary shares could be subject to wide fluctuations in response to a number of factors, including those described elsewhere in this prospectus and others such as:

 

    variations in our operating performance and the performance of our competitors;

 

    actual or anticipated fluctuations in our quarterly or annual operating results;

 

    publication of research reports by securities analysts about us or our competitors or our industry;

 

    our failure or the failure of our competitors to meet analysts’ projections or guidance that we or our competitors may give to the market;

 

    additions and departures of key personnel;

 

    strategic decisions by us or our competitors, such as acquisitions, divestitures, spin-offs, joint ventures, strategic investments or changes in business strategy;

 

    the passage of legislation or other regulatory developments affecting us or our industry;

 

    speculation in the press or investment community;

 

    changes in accounting principles;

 

    terrorist acts, acts of war or periods of widespread civil unrest;

 

    natural disasters and other calamities; and

 

    changes in general market and economic conditions.

In the past, securities class action litigation has often been initiated against companies following periods of volatility in their stock price. This type of litigation could result in substantial costs and divert our management’s attention and resources, and could also require us to make substantial payments to satisfy judgments or to settle litigation.

Your percentage ownership in us may be diluted by future equity issuances, which could reduce your influence over matters on which shareholders vote.

Following the closing of this offering, our board of directors, or Board, has the authority, without action or vote of our shareholders, to issue all or any part of our authorized but unissued ordinary shares, including shares issuable upon the exercise of options, or shares of our authorized but unissued preferred equity. Issuances of ordinary shares or voting preferred stock would reduce your influence over matters on which our shareholders vote and, in the case of issuances of preferred stock, would likely result in your interest in us being subject to the prior rights of holders of that preferred stock.

 

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There may be sales of a substantial amount of our ordinary shares after this offering by our current shareholders, and these sales could cause the price of our ordinary shares to fall.

After this offering, there will be            ordinary shares outstanding. There will be            ordinary shares issued and outstanding if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional ordinary shares. Of our issued and outstanding ordinary shares, all the ordinary shares sold in this offering will be freely transferable, except for any ordinary shares held by our “affiliates,” as that term is defined in Rule 144 under the Securities Act. Following completion of this offering, approximately    % of our outstanding ordinary shares (or    % if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional ordinary shares from us) will be held by the Parent and members of our management and employees.

Each of our directors, executive officers and significant equity holders (including affiliates of the Parent) has entered into a lock-up agreement with Goldman, Sachs & Co., Deutsche Bank Securities Inc., Citigroup Global Markets Inc. and Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, on behalf of the underwriters, which regulates their sales of our ordinary shares for a period of 180 days after the date of this prospectus, subject to certain exceptions and automatic extensions in certain circumstances. See “Shares Eligible for Future Sale—Lock-Up Agreements.”

Sales of substantial amounts of our ordinary shares in the public market after this offering, or the perception that such sales will occur, could adversely affect the market price of our ordinary shares and make it difficult for us to raise funds through securities offerings in the future. Of the ordinary shares to be outstanding after the offering, the shares offered by this prospectus will be eligible for immediate sale in the public market without restriction by persons other than our affiliates. Our remaining outstanding shares will become available for resale in the public market as shown in the chart below.

 

Number of Shares

   Date Available for Resale
  

Beginning 180 days after this offering, subject to certain exceptions and automatic extensions in certain circumstances, holders of our ordinary shares of may require us to register their ordinary shares for resale under the federal securities laws, and holders of additional ordinary shares would be entitled to have their ordinary shares included in any such registration statement, all subject to reduction upon the request of the underwriter of the offering, if any. See “Certain Relationships and Related Party Transactions—Arrangements With Our Investors.” Registration of those ordinary shares would allow the holders to immediately resell their ordinary shares in the public market. Any such sales or anticipation thereof could cause the market price of our ordinary shares to decline.

Provisions in our organizational documents and Luxembourg law may deter takeover efforts that could be beneficial to shareholder value.

In addition to the Parent’s beneficial ownership of a controlling percentage of our ordinary shares, our articles of association and Luxembourg law contain provisions that could make it harder for a third party to acquire us, even if doing so might be beneficial to our shareholders. These provisions include the maximum allowable term for our directors, the ability of the board of directors to approve a merger or other acquisition and to issue additional ordinary shares without shareholder approval that could be used to dilute a potential hostile acquirer. As a result, you may lose your ability to sell your stock for a price in excess of the prevailing market price due to these protective measures, and efforts by shareholders to change the direction or management of the company may be unsuccessful. See “Description of Share Capital.”

The Parent will continue to have significant influence over us after this offering, which could limit your ability to influence the outcome of key transactions, including a change of control.

We are currently controlled, and after this offering is completed will continue to be controlled, by the Parent. Upon completion of this offering, the Parent will beneficially own    % of our outstanding ordinary shares (    % if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional shares from us). For as long as the

 

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Parent continues to beneficially own more than 50% of the voting power of our ordinary shares, it will be able to direct the election of all of the members of our board of directors and could exercise a controlling influence over our business and affairs, including any determinations with respect to mergers or other business combinations, the acquisition or disposition of assets, the incurrence of indebtedness, the issuance of any additional ordinary shares or other equity securities, the repurchase or redemption of ordinary shares and the payment of dividends. Similarly, the Parent will have the power to determine matters submitted to a vote of our shareholders without the consent of our other shareholders, will have the power to prevent a change in our control and could take other actions that might be favorable to it. Even if its ownership falls below 50%, the Parent and its affiliates will continue to be able to strongly influence or effectively control our decisions.

Additionally, certain affiliates of the Parent are in the business of making investments in companies and may acquire and hold interests in businesses that compete directly or indirectly with us. They may also pursue acquisition opportunities that may be complementary to our business, and, as a result, those acquisition opportunities may not be available to us.

There is no existing market for our ordinary shares, and we do not know if one will develop to provide you with adequate liquidity to sell our ordinary shares at prices equal to or greater than the price you paid in this offering.

Prior to this offering, there has not been a public market for our ordinary shares. We cannot predict the extent to which an active trading market on the stock exchange on which we list our ordinary shares will develop. If an active trading market does not develop, you may have difficulty selling any of our ordinary shares that you buy. The initial public offering price for our ordinary shares will be determined by negotiations between us and the representatives of the underwriters and may not be indicative of prices that will prevail in the open market following this offering. Consequently, you may not be able to sell our ordinary shares at prices equal to or greater than the price you paid in this offering, or at all.

Because we have no current plans to pay cash dividends on our ordinary shares for the foreseeable future, you may not receive any return on investment unless you sell your ordinary shares for a price greater than that which you paid for it.

We may retain future earnings, if any, for future operations, expansion and debt repayment and have no current plans to pay any cash dividends for the foreseeable future. Any decision to declare and pay dividends in the future will be made at the discretion of our board of directors and will depend on, among other things, our results of operations, financial condition, cash requirements, contractual restrictions and other factors that our board of directors may deem relevant. In addition, our ability to pay dividends may be limited by covenants of any existing and future outstanding indebtedness we or our subsidiaries incur, including our Revolving Facility. As a result, you may not receive any return on an investment in our ordinary shares unless you sell our ordinary shares for a price greater than that which you paid for them.

 

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CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This prospectus contains forward-looking statements including, without limitation, statements concerning plans, objectives, goals, projections, strategies, future events or performance, and underlying assumptions and other statements, which are not statements of historical facts. Forward looking statements may be identified by the use of words like “expect,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “forecast,” “outlook,” “will,” “may,” “might,” “potential,” “likely,” “target,” “plan,” “contemplate,” “seek,” “attempt,” “should,” “could,” “would” or expressions of similar meaning. Forward-looking statements reflect management’s evaluation of information currently available and are based on our current expectations and assumptions regarding our business, the economy and other future conditions. Because forward-looking statements relate to the future, they are subject to inherent uncertainties, risks and changes in circumstances that are difficult to predict. Specific factors that may impact performance or other predictions of future actions have, in many but not all cases, been identified in connection with specific forward-looking statements. Our actual results may differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements. They are neither statements of historical fact nor guarantees or assurances of future performance. We caution you therefore against relying on any of these forward-looking statements.

Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include economic, business, competitive, market and regulatory conditions and the following:

 

    our continued reliance on our relationship with Dow;

 

    our substantial level of indebtedness;

 

    the stability of our joint ventures;

 

    lawsuits resulting from products or operations;

 

    volatility in costs or disruption in the supply of the raw materials utilized for our products;

 

    hazards associated with chemical manufacturing;

 

    the competitive nature of our end markets;

 

    our compliance with environmental, health and safety laws;

 

    conditions in the global economy and capital markets;

 

    any disruptions in production at our manufacturing facilities;

 

    increases in the cost of energy;

 

    our ability to maintain the necessary licenses and permits we need for our operations;

 

    failure to maintain an effective system of internal controls;

 

    current insurance not covering all potential exposures;

 

    changes in laws and regulations applicable to our business;

 

    our dependence upon key executive management and any inability to attract and retain other qualified management personnel;

 

    fluctuations in currency exchange rates;

 

    strategic acquisitions affecting current operations;

 

    the loss of customers;

 

    any inability to continue technological innovation and successful introduction of new products;

 

    any inability to protect our trademarks, patents or other intellectual property rights;

 

    data security breaches;

 

    failure of our assumptions and projections to be accurate;

 

    local business risks in different countries in which we operate;

 

    seasonality of our business; and

 

    other risks described in the “Risk Factors” section of this prospectus.

 

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We derive many of our forward-looking statements from our operating budgets and forecasts, which are based upon many detailed assumptions. While we believe that our assumptions are reasonable, we caution that it is very difficult to predict the impact of known factors, and, it is impossible for us to anticipate all factors that could affect our actual results. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from our expectations, or cautionary statements, are disclosed under the sections entitled “Risk Factors” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” in this prospectus. All written and oral forward-looking statements attributable to us, or persons acting on our behalf, are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements as well as other cautionary statements that are made from time to time in our other public communications. You should evaluate all forward-looking statements made in this prospectus in the context of these risks and uncertainties.

We caution you that the important factors referenced above may not contain all of the factors that are important to you. In addition, we cannot assure you that we will realize the results or developments we expect or anticipate or, even if substantially realized, that they will result in the consequences or affect us or our operations in the way we expect. The forward-looking statements included in this prospectus are made only as of the date hereof. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as otherwise required by law.

 

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USE OF PROCEEDS

We estimate based upon an assumed initial public offering price of $         per ordinary share, the midpoint of the range set forth on the cover of this prospectus, that we will receive net proceeds from the offering of approximately $         million (or approximately $         million if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional shares), after deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us.

A $1.00 increase or decrease in the assumed initial public offering price of $         per ordinary share would increase or decrease the net proceeds we receive from this offering by approximately $         million, assuming the number of ordinary shares offered by us, as set forth on the cover of this prospectus, remains the same.

We intend to use the net proceeds from this offering to repay approximately $         of indebtedness under our 8.750% Senior Secured Notes due 2019 and for working capital and general corporate purposes. As of December 31, 2013, there was approximately $1,325.0 million in aggregate principal amount of our 8.750% Senior Secured Notes due 2019 outstanding. For a description of the applicable redemption provisions in our indenture, including our supplemental indentures, see “Description of Indebtedness—Senior Notes.”

 

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DIVIDEND POLICY

We currently intend to retain all available funds and any future earnings to fund the development and growth of our business and to repay indebtedness, and therefore we do not anticipate paying any cash dividends in the foreseeable future. The payment of cash distributions on ordinary shares is restricted under the terms of our Revolving Facility, the indenture governing our Senior Notes and applicable Luxembourg law. Additionally, because we are a holding company, our ability to pay dividends on our ordinary shares is limited by restrictions on the ability of our subsidiaries to pay dividends or make distributions to us, including restrictions under the terms of the agreements governing our indebtedness. See “Description of Indebtedness.” Any future determination to pay dividends will be at the discretion of our board of directors, subject to compliance with covenants in current and future agreements governing our indebtedness, and will depend upon our results of operations, financial condition, capital requirements and other factors that our board of directors deems relevant.

 

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CAPITALIZATION

The following table sets forth our cash and cash equivalents and our capitalization as of December 31, 2013 on an actual basis and on an as adjusted basis to give effect to (i) the offering and application of the net proceeds from this offering as described in this prospectus and (ii) the payment of approximately $             out of available cash to the Advisors in connection with the termination of our Advisory Agreement and our Transaction Services Agreement. See “Related Party Transactions—Advisory Agreement and Transaction Services Agreement.”

You should read the following table in conjunction with the sections entitled “Use of Proceeds,” “Selected Consolidated Financial and Other Data,” “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and our consolidated financial statements and related notes included elsewhere in this prospectus.

 

     As of December 31, 2013
     Actual     As Adjusted(1)
     (in thousands)

Cash and cash equivalents

   $ 196,503     
  

 

 

   

 

Debt:

    

Secured debt, including current portion:

    

Accounts receivable securitization facility

     —       

Revolving Facility(2)

     —       

Other indebtedness(3)

     11,421     

Senior Notes

     1,325,000     
  

 

 

   

 

Total debt, including current portion

   $ 1,336,421     
  

 

 

   

 

Shareholder’s equity:

    

Common stock (ordinary shares), $0.01 par value per share; 16,275,329 shares authorized, issued and outstanding on an actual basis;              shares authorized, issued and outstanding on an as adjusted basis

   $ 162,753     

Additional paid-in capital

     176,675     

Accumulated deficit

     (84,604  

Accumulated other comprehensive income

     88,378     
  

 

 

   

 

Total shareholder’s equity

   $ 343,202     
  

 

 

   

 

Total capitalization

   $ 1,876,126     
  

 

 

   

 

 

(1) A $1.00 increase or decrease in the assumed initial public offering price of $         per ordinary share, the midpoint of the range set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, would increase or decrease the net proceeds from this offering available to us by approximately $         million, assuming the number of ordinary shares offered by us, as set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, remains the same after deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us. See “Use of Proceeds.”
(2) Excludes $7.3 million of undrawn letters of credit.
(3) Includes outstanding borrowings under our short-term revolving credit facility through our subsidiary in China. See “Description of Indebtedness—Other Indebtedness.”

 

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DILUTION

If you invest in our ordinary shares, your ownership interest will be immediately diluted to the extent of the difference between the initial public offering price per ordinary share and the net tangible book value per ordinary share after this offering. Dilution results from the fact the initial public offering price per ordinary share is substantially in excess of the book value per ordinary share attributable to the existing shareholders for the presently outstanding ordinary shares of. We calculate net tangible book value per ordinary share by dividing the net tangible book value (total consolidated tangible assets less total consolidated liabilities) by the number of outstanding ordinary shares.

Our net tangible book value at December 31, 2013 was approximately $(2.3) million, or approximately $0.0 per ordinary share before giving effect to this offering. Dilution in net tangible book value per share represents the difference between the amount per share that you pay in this offering and the net tangible book value per share immediately after this offering.

After giving effect to the receipt of the estimated net proceeds from our sale of shares in this offering, assuming an initial public offering price of $         per share (the mid-point of the offering range shown on the cover of this prospectus), and the application of the estimated net proceeds therefrom as described under “Use of proceeds,” our pro forma net tangible book value at December 31, 2013 would have been approximately $        , or $         per ordinary share. This represents an immediate increase in net tangible book value per share of $         to existing shareholders and an immediate decrease in net tangible book value per share of $         to you. The following table illustrates this dilution per share.

 

Assumed initial public offering price per ordinary share(a)

  $            

Pro forma net tangible book value per ordinary share at December 31, 2013

  $                

Increase per share attributable to new investors in this offering

 

Pro forma net tangible book value per ordinary share after this offering

 
 

 

Dilution per share to new investors

  $            
 

 

 

 
  (a) The midpoint of the range set forth on the cover of this prospectus.

If the underwriters exercise their option in full to purchase additional shares, the pro forma net tangible book value ordinary share after giving effect to this offering would be $         ordinary share. This represents an increase in pro forma net tangible book value of $         per ordinary share to existing shareholders and dilution in pro forma net tangible book value of $         per ordinary share to you.

A $1.00 increase (decrease) in the assumed initial public offering price of $         per ordinary share would increase (decrease) our pro forma net tangible book value after giving effect to the offering by $         million, or by $         per ordinary share, assuming no change to the number of ordinary shares offered by us as set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, and after deducting the estimated underwriting discounts and estimated expenses payable by us.

 

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The following table sets forth, as of December 31, 2013, the number of ordinary shares purchased from us, the total consideration paid to us and the average price per share paid by existing shareholders and to be paid by new investors purchasing ordinary shares in this offering, before deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us.

 

     Shares Purchased     Total Consideration     Average
Price Per
Share
 
     Number    Percent     Amount      Percent        

Existing shareholders

                   $                             $            

New investors

            
  

 

  

 

 

   

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

 

Total

                   $                     
  

 

  

 

 

   

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

 

If the underwriters were to fully exercise their option to purchase additional ordinary shares from us, the percentage of our ordinary shares held by existing shareholders would be     %, and the percentage of ordinary shares held by new investors would be     %.

To the extent any options or other equity awards are granted and exercised or become vested or other issuances of ordinary shares are made, there may be further economic dilution to new investors.

 

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SELECTED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL AND OTHER DATA

The following table sets forth our selected consolidated financial and other data. The selected consolidated statement of operations data and cash flow data for the years ended December 31, 2013, 2012 and 2011, and the selected consolidated balance sheet data as of December 31, 2013 and 2012 presented below were derived from our audited consolidated financial statements and the related notes thereto included elsewhere in this prospectus. The selected consolidated statement of operations data and cash flow data for the period from June 17, 2010 through December 31, 2010 and the balance sheet data of December 31, 2011 and 2010 were derived from our successor period audited financial statements and the related notes thereto, which are not included in this prospectus. The selected consolidated statement of operations data and cash flow data for the period from January 1, 2010 through June 16, 2010 and for the year ended December 31, 2009, and the historical balance sheet data as of June 16, 2010 have been derived from our predecessor period audited financial statements and the related notes thereto for the Styron business, which are not included in this prospectus.

Our historical results are not necessarily indicative of the results to be expected for any future periods. Our historical financial data and that of the Styron business during the predecessor periods (see footnote 1 below) are not necessarily indicative of our future performance, nor does such data reflect what our financial position and results of operations would have been had we operated as a publicly-traded company during the periods shown.

This selected consolidated financial and other data should be read in conjunction with the disclosure set forth under “Capitalization” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and the consolidated financial statements and the related notes thereto appearing elsewhere in this prospectus.

 

     Successor           Predecessor (1)  
     Year Ended
December 31,
    June 17
through
December 31,
          January 1
through
June 16,
     Year Ended
December 31,
 
(in millions, except per share data)    2013     2012     2011     2010           2010      2009  

Statement of Operations Data:

                  

Net sales(2)

   $ 5,307.4      $ 5,451.9      $ 6,192.9      $ 2,876.9           $ 2,090.1       $ 3,450.1   

Cost of sales(2)(3)

     4,949.4        5,115.2        5,797.3        2,661.7             1,895.9         3,148.8   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

        

 

 

    

 

 

 

Gross profit

     358.0        336.7        395.6        215.2             194.2         301.3   

Selling, general and administrative expenses

     216.9        182.0        308.6        124.6             64.6         142.5   

Acquisition-related expenses

     —         —         —         56.5             —          —    

Equity in earnings (losses) of unconsolidated affiliates

     39.1        27.1        23.9        12.6             4.5         (5.6
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

        

 

 

    

 

 

 

Operating income

     180.2        181.8        110.9        46.7             134.1         153.2   

Interest expense, net(4)

     132.0        110.0        111.4        47.9             —          —    

Loss on extinguishment of long-term debt(5)

     20.7        —         55.7        —              —          —    

Other expense (income), net

     27.9        24.0        (20.1     (2.3          7.6         (0.6
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

        

 

 

    

 

 

 

Income (loss) before income taxes

     (0.4     47.8        (36.1     1.1             126.5         153.8   

Provision for income taxes

     21.8        17.5        39.8        17.9             53.0         90.0   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

        

 

 

    

 

 

 

Net income (loss)

   $ (22.2   $ 30.3      $ (75.9   $ (16.8        $ 73.5       $ 63.8   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

        

 

 

    

 

 

 

Weighted average shares

     16,275.3        7,040.9        60.9        71.7             

Net income (loss) per share (basic and diluted)

   $ (0.00   $ (0.00   $ (1.25   $ (0.23          
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

     

 

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     Year Ended December 31,  
     2013     2012     2011  
     (in millions)  

Other Financial Data:

      

Cash flows provided by (used in):

      

Operating activities

   $ 211.3      $ 186.1      $ 151.1   

Investing activities

     (33.4     (117.3     (99.1

Financing activities

     (220.2     (77.2     44.9   

Depreciation and amortization

     95.2        85.6        101.6   

Capital expenditures, net of subsidy(6)

     54.8        112.4        99.8   

Balance Sheet Data:

      

Cash and cash equivalents

   $ 196.5      $ 236.4      $ 245.3   

Working capital(7)

     810.2        778.1        765.2   

Total assets

     2,574.8        2,665.7        2,576.6   

Debt

     1,336.4        1,453.6        1,651.4   

Total liabilities

     2,231.6        2,374.0        2,456.0   

Total shareholder’s equity

     343.2        291.7        120.5   

 

(1) On June 17, 2010, we acquired 100% of the Styron business from Dow through Trinseo Materials Operating S.C.A., a wholly owned subsidiary, for approximately $1.5 billion plus transaction expenses (the “Acquisition”). The purchase price paid was allocated to the acquired assets and liabilities at fair value. Prior to June 17, 2010, our business was wholly owned by Dow. All periods prior to the Acquisition may be referred to herein as the “predecessor periods”, while those after the Acquisition may be referred to as “successor periods”.
(2) Net sales and cost of sales increase or decrease based on fluctuations in raw material prices. Consistent with industry practice and as permitted under agreements with many of our customers, raw material price changes are generally passed through to customers by means of corresponding price changes. Prior to June 17, 2010, all inventory sales between the Styron business and Dow business units were recorded at Dow’s internal manufacturing cost.
(3) Included in the predecessor periods presented are expenses related to planned major maintenance activity or turnaround activities. The predecessor periods presented represent the financial results of the Styron business prior to the Acquisition and were derived from the consolidated financial statements and accounting records of Dow, which elected the direct expensing method for the treatment of turnaround activities. This included $14.2 million of turnaround activities during the predecessor period from January 1 through June 16, 2010 and $7.6 million of turnaround activities during the predecessor period ending December 31, 2009. As disclosed in “Management’s Discussion & Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations—Significant Accounting Policies”, during all successor periods presented, we have elected to capitalize qualified turnaround activities and amortize those costs over the period to the next scheduled turnaround date, consistent with the deferral method of accounting. We incurred $2.3 million, $5.5 million and $15.3 million in turnaround activities during the years ended December 31, 2013, 2012, and 2011, respectively. No such turnaround activities were directly incurred by us in the successor period ended December 31, 2010.
(4) In the predecessor periods, interest expense was not allocated to the Styron business as no debt was allocated.
(5) For the year ended December 31, 2011, the loss on extinguishment of debt relates to the February 2, 2011 amendment of our Senior Secured Credit Facility. For the year ended December 31, 2013, the loss on extinguishment of debt relates to the January 2013 amendment of our Senior Secured Credit Facility and repayment of term loans thereunder.
(6) Represents capital expenditures, net of government subsidies received for SSBR expansion of $18.8 million, $6.1 million, and $0 for the years ended December 31, 2013, 2012 and 2011, respectively.
(7) Working capital represents current assets minus current liabilities.

 

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MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION

AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS

Overview

We are a leading global materials company engaged in the manufacture and marketing of emulsion polymers and plastics, including various specialty and technologically differentiated products. We have leading market positions in many of the markets in which we compete. We believe we have developed these strong market positions due to our technological differentiation, diverse global manufacturing base, long-standing customer relationships, commitment to sustainable solutions and competitive cost positions. We believe that growth in overall consumer spending and construction activity, increased demand in the automotive industry for higher fuel efficiency and lighter-weight materials, and improving living standards in emerging markets will result in growth in the global markets in which we compete. In addition, we believe our increasing business presence in developing regions such as China, Southeast Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe further enhances our prospects.

We develop emulsion polymers and plastics products that are incorporated into a wide range of our customers’ products throughout the world, including tires and other products for automotive applications, carpet and artificial turf backing, coated paper and packaging board, food service packaging, appliances, medical devices, consumer electronics and construction applications, among others. We seek to regularly develop new and improved products and processes, supported by our strong patent portfolio, designed to enhance our customers’ product offerings. We have long-standing relationships with a diverse base of global customers, many of whom are leaders in their markets and rely on us for formulation, technological differentiation, and compounding expertise to find sustainable solutions for their businesses. Many of our products represent only a small portion of a finished product’s production costs, but provide critical functionality to the finished product and are often specifically developed to customer specifications. We believe these product traits result in substantial customer loyalty for our products.

We operate in four reporting segments under two business units. Our Emulsion Polymers business unit includes our Latex reporting segment and our Synthetic Rubber reporting segment. Our Plastics business unit includes our Styrenics reporting segment and our Engineered Polymers reporting segment.

We have significant manufacturing and production operations around the world, which allow us to serve our global customer base. As of December 31, 2013, our production facilities included 35 manufacturing plants (which included a total of 83 production units) at 27 sites across 14 countries, including joint ventures and contract manufacturers. Our manufacturing locations include sites in high-growth emerging markets such as China, Indonesia and Brazil. Additionally, as of December 31, 2013 we operated 11 research and development (“R&D”) facilities globally, including mini plants, development centers and pilot coaters, which we believe are critical to our global presence and innovation capabilities.

For the years ended December 31, 2013, 2012, and 2011, we generated approximately $5.3 billion in net sales and $22.2 million in net losses, $5.5 billion in net sales and $30.3 million in net income, and $6.2 billion in net sales and $75.9 million in net losses, respectively.

Industry Trends

We believe demand for our products is strongly correlated to growth in our customers’ end markets, which are expected to grow along with anticipated rising gross domestic product and industrial production. We believe growth in our markets is supported by improving living standards in emerging markets, the globalization of automotive platforms, improving fuel efficiency and the increasing demand for light-weight materials and upgraded automotive interior materials as well as wide-spread growth in the need for high performance lightweight materials for the electronics industry. We believe we are well-positioned to take advantage of these

 

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trends. For example, improving living standards are driving demand for coated paper in emerging markets, particularly in China. We have a leading SB latex position in China. As another example, we are following our current automotive customers to emerging markets with plans to supply them locally as part of their strategy to globalize automotive car platforms. In addition, in synthetic rubber, increasing fuel efficiency regulation is driving demand for SSBR, a key material for high-performance tires. We have a leading European market position in advanced SSBR, and have completed a recent capacity expansion at our Schkopau, Germany facility.

We believe our business will continue to benefit from improving market dynamics in our industry. Over the last few years, companies have rationalized higher-cost capacity in many of our key product lines and there have been a number of consolidation activities, both in emulsion polymers and in plastics. We believe that our markets will continue to experience a long-term trend towards consolidation which will create opportunities for our business given our scale and geographic reach. Developments in the market for certain of our raw materials have a substantial impact on our business.

Factors Affecting Our Operating Results

The following discussion sets forth certain components of our statements of operations as well as factors that impact those items.

Net Sales

We generate revenue from the sale of our products across all major geographic areas. Our net sales include total sales less estimates for returns and price allowances. Price allowances include discounts for prompt payment as well as volume-based incentives.

Our overall net sales are generally impacted by the following factors:

 

    fluctuations in overall economic activity within the geographic markets in which we operate;

 

    fluctuations in raw material input costs and our ability to pass those on to customers, including the effects of a generally 30 to 60-day delay (or greater) in changes to our product prices in our Latex segment, Synthetic Rubber segment, and parts of our Plastics division following changes to the relevant raw material prices affect our sales margins;

 

    underlying growth in one or more of our core end markets, either worldwide or in particular geographies in which we operate;

 

    changes in the level of competition faced by our products, including the substitution by customers of alternative products to ours and the launch of new products by competitors;

 

    the type of products used within existing customer applications, or the development of new applications requiring products similar to ours;

 

    the “mix” of products sold, including the proportion of new or improved products and their pricing relative to existing products;

 

    changes in product sales prices (including volume discounts and cash discounts for prompt payment);

 

    our ability to successfully develop and launch new products and applications; and

 

    fluctuations in foreign exchange rates.

While the factors described above impact net sales in each of our segments, the impact of these factors can differ for each segment, as described below. For more information about risks relating to our business see “Risk Factors.”

 

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Cost of Sales

Our cost of sales consists principally of the following:

 

    Production Materials Costs. The costs of the materials we use in production are the largest element of our overall cost of sales. We seek to use our substantial volumes and global geographic scope to obtain the most favorable terms we can, but our production material costs are affected by global and local market conditions.

 

    Employee Costs. These employee costs include the salary costs and benefit charges for employees involved in our manufacturing operations. These costs generally increase on an aggregate basis as production volumes increase, but may decline as a percent of net sales as a result of economies of scale associated with higher production volumes.

 

    Sustaining Engineering Activity Costs. These costs relate to modifications of existing products for use by new customers in familiar applications.

 

    Depreciation and Amortization Expense. Property, plant, equipment and definite-lived intangible assets are stated at cost and depreciated on a straight-line basis over their estimated useful lives. Property, plant and equipment, including leasehold interests, and intangible assets acquired through the Acquisition were recorded at fair value on the acquisition date, resulting in a new cost basis for accounting purposes.

 

    Other. Our remaining cost of sales consists of:

 

    customer-related development costs;

 

    freight costs;

 

    warehousing expenses;

 

    purchasing costs; and

 

    other general manufacturing expenses, such as expenses for utilities and energy consumption.

The main factors that influence our cost of sales as a percent of net sales include:

 

    changes in the price of raw materials, and timing of corresponding price changes to our customers, which impact our sales margins;

 

    production volumes;

 

    the implementation of cost control measures aimed at improving productivity, reductions of fixed production costs, refinements in inventory management and purchasing cost of raw materials; and

 

    the impact of FIFO method inventory treatment.

Selling, General and Administrative Expenses

Our selling, general and administrative, or SG&A, expense consists of all expenditures incurred in connection with the sale and marketing of our products, as well as administrative overhead costs, including:

 

    salary and benefit costs for sales personnel and administrative staff, including stock-based compensation expense. Expenses relating to our sales personnel generally increase or decrease principally with changes in sales volume due to the need to increase or decrease sales personnel to meet changes in demand. Expenses relating to administrative personnel generally do not increase or decrease directly with changes in sales volume;

 

    other administrative expenses, including expenses related to logistics, information systems and legal and accounting services;

 

    general advertising expenses;

 

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    research and development expenses; and

 

    other selling expenses, such as expenses incurred in connection with travel and communications.

Changes in SG&A expense as a percent of net sales have historically been impacted by a number of factors, including:

 

    changes in sales volume, as higher volumes enable us to spread the fixed portion of our administrative expense over higher sales;

 

    changes in the mix of products we sell, as some products may require more customer support and sales effort than others;

 

    changes in our customer base, as new customers may require different levels of sales and marketing attention;

 

    new product launches in existing and new markets, as these launches typically involve more intense sales activity before they are integrated into customer applications;

 

    customer credit issues requiring increases to the allowance for doubtful accounts; and

 

    the implementation of cost control measures aimed at improving productivity.

Interest Expense, Net

Interest expense, net consists primarily of interest expense on institutional borrowings and other financing obligations and changes in fair value of interest rate derivative instruments, when outstanding. Interest expense, net also includes the amortization of deferred financing fees and debt discount associated with our Senior Secured Credit Facility and our Senior Notes offset by interest income primarily associated with cash-on-hand. Factors affecting interest expense include fluctuations in the market interest rate, our borrowing activities and our outstanding debt balances.

Provision for Income Taxes

We and our subsidiaries are subject to income tax in the various jurisdictions in which we operate. While the extent of our future tax liability is uncertain, the impact of acquisition accounting, changes to the debt and equity capitalization of our subsidiaries, and the realignment of the functions performed and risks assumed by the various subsidiaries are among the factors that will determine the future book and taxable income of the respective subsidiary and the Company as a whole.

 

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Results of Operations

Results of Operations for the Years Ended December 31, 2013, 2012 and 2011

The tables below set forth our historical results of operations and these results as a percentage of net sales for the periods indicated (in millions):

 

     Year Ended
December 31,
 
(in millions)    2013     2012     2011  

Net sales

   $ 5,307.4      $ 5,451.9      $ 6,192.9   

Cost of sales

     4,949.4        5,115.2        5,797.3   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Gross profit

     358.0        336.7        395.6   

Selling, general and administrative expenses

     216.9        182.0        308.6   

Equity in earnings of unconsolidated affiliates

     39.1        27.1        23.9   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Operating income

     180.2        181.8        110.9   

Interest expense, net

     132.0        110.0        111.4   

Loss on extinguishment of long-term debt

     20.7        —         55.7   

Other expense (income), net

     27.9        24.0        (20.1
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Income (loss) before income taxes

     (0.4     47.8        (36.1

Provision for income taxes

     21.8        17.5        39.8   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Net income (loss)

   $ (22.2   $ 30.3      $ (75.9
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 
     Year Ended
December 31,
 
     2013     2012     2011  

Net sales

     100.0     100.0     100.0

Cost of sales

     93.3     93.8     93.6
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Gross profit

     6.7     6.2     6.4

Selling, general and administrative expenses

     4.1     3.3     5.0

Equity in earnings of unconsolidated affiliates

     0.7     0.5     0.4
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Operating income

     3.3     3.4     1.8

Interest expense, net

     2.5     2.0     1.8

Loss on extinguishment of long-term debt

     0.4     0.0     0.9

Other expense (income), net

     0.5     0.4     (0.3 )% 
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Income (loss) before income taxes

     (0.1 )%      1.0     (0.6 )% 

Provision for income taxes

     0.4     0.3     0.6
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Net income (loss)

     (0.5 )%      0.7     (1.2 )% 
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

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Year Ended December 31, 2013 Compared to the Year Ended December 31, 2012

Net Sales

Net sales for 2013 decreased by $144.5 million, or 2.7%, to $5,307.4 million from $5,451.9 million in 2012. Of the 2.7% decrease in net sales, 1.5% was due to lower sales volume and 2.8% was due to lower selling prices, which were offset by a 1.6% increase in sales due to favorable currency impact as the U.S. dollar weakened compared to the euro. The overall decrease in sales volume was primarily due to lower volumes in the Styrenics and Latex segments. The lower demand in Styrenics was largely driven by increases in the selling price of our polystyrene products due to the pass through of price increases of our key raw material (styrene monomer) while Latex was driven by lower demand in the Europe and Asia paper markets. These were partially offset by higher sales volume in the Synthetic Rubber segment due to the SSBR capacity expansion. The overall decrease in selling price was due to the contractual pass through of lower butadiene cost in the Latex and Synthetic Rubber segments.

Cost of Sales

Cost of sales for 2013 decreased by $165.8 million, or 3.2%, to $4,949.4 million from $5,115.2 million in 2012. Of the 3.2% decrease, 1.9% was primarily attributable to lower sales volume and 3.2% was due to lower raw materials costs, primarily butadiene with some offset from higher styrene related costs. These decreases were partially offset by an unfavorable currency impact of approximately 1.6% and the remaining variance was due to increases in other manufacturing costs. The unfavorable currency impact was due to the U.S. dollar weakening as compared to the euro.

Gross Profit

Gross profit for 2013 increased by $21.3 million, or 6.3%, to $358.0 million from $336.7 million in 2012. The increase was primarily attributable to higher margin in the Styrenics segment, with lower raw material cost, margin improvement initiatives, and improved market dynamics, as well as new business from the SSBR expansion.

Selling, General and Administrative Expenses

SG&A expenses for 2013 increased by $34.9 million, or 19.2%, to $216.9 million from $182.0 million in 2012. The increase in SG&A expenses were primarily due to: i) $10.8 million restructuring expenses incurred during 2013 in connection with the closure of our latex manufacturing facility in Altona, Australia, which includes impairment of property, plant and equipment, termination benefits and contract termination costs; ii) a one-time charge of $9.2 million representing impairment of fixed assets at our polycarbonate manufacturing plant in Stade, Germany; and iii) $9.3 million of pension costs including a $2.1 million curtailment charge.

The remaining increases in our SG&A expenses were due to higher performance incentive compensation costs, general severance, and the impact of annual salary increases totaling $12.0 million, plus an unfavorable currency impact of approximately $2.6 million as the U.S. dollar weakened compared to the euro. Also, during 2012, we recorded an adjustment to reduce stock-based compensation expense by approximately $2.5 million relating to the correction of prior period grant date fair values of time-based and performance-based restricted stock awards. No similar adjustments occurred in 2013.

These increases were offset by approximately $7.5 million of special termination benefit charges incurred in 2012 and a $3.0 million benefit from a change in the estimate for our allowance for doubtful accounts in 2013.

Equity in Earnings of Unconsolidated Affiliates

Equity in earnings of unconsolidated affiliates for 2013 was $39.1 million compared to equity in earnings of $27.1 million for 2012. Americas Styrenics LLC, or AmSty, equity earnings increased to $39.4 million in 2013

 

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from $27.0 million in 2012, due to stronger operating performance driven by improved market conditions. Sumika Styron Polycarbonate Limited, which we refer to as Sumika Styron, equity earnings decreased to equity in net losses of $0.3 million in 2013 from equity earnings of $0.1 million in 2012.

Interest Expense, Net

Interest expense, net for the year ended December 31, 2013 was $132.0 million compared to $110.0 million for the year ended December 31, 2012. The increase of $22.0 million was attributable to the higher outstanding principal and interest rate on the Senior Notes which bear an interest rate of 8.75% compared to 6.0% interest rate on the Term Loans for the comparative period in 2012. The Term Loans were repaid in January 2013 with the issuance of the Senior Notes. This increase was slightly offset by a decrease in interest expense from our Revolving Facility due to lower borrowings in 2013 compared to prior year.

Loss on Extinguishment of Long-Term Debt

Loss on extinguishment of debt was $20.7 million for the year ended December 31, 2013 related to the extinguishment of our $1,239.0 million term loans under our Senior Secured Credit Facility, which was comprised of the write-off of existing unamortized deferred financing fees and original issue discount attributable to the term loans totaling $14.4 million and $6.3 million, respectively. There was no loss on extinguishment of debt recognized during the year ended December 31, 2012.

Other Expense (Income), net

Other expense, net for the year ended December 31, 2013 was $27.9 million, which consisted primarily of a $4.2 million loss on the sale of our Styrenics expandable polystyrene, or EPS, business and $18.9 million foreign exchange transaction losses primarily driven by the remeasurement of our euro payables to the U.S. dollar. The remaining other expenses, net include value-added taxes of approximately $2.5 million and other expense.

Other expense, net for the year ended December 31, 2012 was $24.0 million and included foreign exchange transaction losses of $22.8 million, which were primarily driven by the remeasurement of our euro payables to the U.S. dollar as well as unrealized losses on our foreign exchange forward contracts of approximately $3.8 million. In addition, we incurred approximately $2.3 million of third-party fees associated with the 2012 amendment of our Senior Secured Credit Facility.

Provision for Income Taxes

Provision for income taxes for 2013 totaled $21.8 million resulting in a negative effective tax rate of 5,921.0%. Provision for income taxes for 2012 totaled $17.5 million resulting in an effective tax rate of 36.6%.

The 2013 effective tax rate was unfavorably impacted by non-deductible interest and stock-based compensation expenses, resulting in an unfavorable difference of $8.4 million from the U.S. statutory rate. Our effective tax rate was further impacted by the tax effect of losses of $16.4 million incurred in jurisdictions such as Australia, Brazil, and Luxembourg which did not provide a tax benefit to us due to valuation allowances.

Offsetting these unfavorable impacts were lower tax expenses of $17.3 million from Switzerland and Hong Kong, where the statutory income tax rate is lower than the U.S. statutory rate. In addition, in 2013, we received a non-taxable government subsidy of $12.2 million related to our capital expansion project at our rubber facility in Schkopau, Germany, which provided a favorable difference of $4.2 million from the U.S. statutory rate.

The increase from 2012 in provision for income taxes was primarily due to net loss before income tax in jurisdictions outside the United States of $25.6 million. Of this loss, $65.0 million was generated from our

 

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subsidiaries in Australia and Luxembourg, where we either do not receive a benefit from certain shareholder expenses or we have valuation allowances. In 2012, losses from these jurisdictions were $24.8 million. The increased losses from Australia and Luxembourg are primarily due to restructuring charges incurred in connection with the shutdown of our latex manufacturing plant in Altona, Australia and a portion of increased interest expense from the issuance of our Senior Notes in January 2013. We also have an additional valuation allowance of $3.1 million recorded in Singapore and Brazil which were previously not provided for noting that in 2012 we were favorably impacted by a release of valuation allowances of $14.4 million in Hong Kong and China.

Year Ended December 31, 2012 Compared to the Year Ended December 31, 2011

Net Sales

Net sales for 2012 decreased by $741.0 million, or 12.0%, to $5,451.9 million from $6,192.9 million in 2011. Of the 12.0% decrease in net sales, 6.2% was due to lower sales volume and 1.1% was due to lower selling prices. Additionally, net sales decreased by 4.7% from the prior year due to unfavorable currency impact as the U.S. dollar strengthened compared to the euro. The decrease in volume and selling prices was primarily due to the weakened economic environment, particularly in Europe, and increasing competition.

Cost of Sales

Cost of sales for 2012 decreased by $682.1 million, or 11.8%, to $5,115.2 million from $5,797.3 million in 2011. Of the 11.8% decrease in cost of sales, 6.3% was attributable to lower sales volume and approximately 4.1% was due to a net favorable currency impact driven by the strengthening of the U.S. dollar as compared to the euro in 2012. In addition, 1.2% of the decrease was due to lower depreciation and other manufacturing cost reductions.

Gross Profit

Gross profit for 2012 decreased by $58.9 million, or 14.9%, to $336.7 million from $395.6 million in 2011. Of the 14.9% decrease, 19.6% was primarily attributable to an overall decrease in sales volume and prices driven by increasing competition and a weakened economic environment, particularly in Europe, plus net unfavorable currency impact of approximately 13.4%. These decreases were offset by lower manufacturing cost and depreciation that contributed approximately 18.1% of increase in our gross profit.

Selling, General and Administrative Expenses

SG&A expense for 2012 decreased by $126.6 million, or 41.0%, to $182.0 million from $308.6 million in 2011. The decrease was primarily the result of higher consulting, accounting, and legal fees associated with our separation from Dow and transition of our initial financial close process as a stand-alone entity in 2011, which together contributed approximately $94.2 million of the decrease. We also incurred an additional $11.1 million related to special stock-based compensation expense in 2011 resulting from the shareholder distribution and share redemption in February 2011, which is further discussed in Note Q to the consolidated financial statements. SG&A further decreased in 2012 due to reductions in employee-related expenses as a result of restructuring programs implemented in the third quarter of 2011 and first quarter of 2012, and a stock-based compensation adjustment related to the correction of prior period grant date fair values of time-based and performance-based restricted stock awards that reduced the recorded expense in the first quarter of 2012 by approximately $2.5 million. The expenses recorded related to the restructuring programs for the year ended December 31, 2012 and 2011 were approximately $7.5 million and $9.2 million, respectively. Other decreases were due to an approximately $7.6 million favorable currency impact driven by the strengthening of the U.S. dollar as compared to the euro in 2012 and other cost reduction efforts.

 

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Equity in Earnings of Unconsolidated Affiliates

Equity in earnings of unconsolidated affiliates for 2012 was $27.1 million compared to equity in earnings of $23.9 million for 2011. AmSty equity earnings increased to $27.0 million from $24.1 million in 2011. Sumika Styron equity earnings increased to $0.1 million from a loss of $0.2 million in 2011.

Interest Expense, Net

Net interest expense for the year ended December 31, 2012 was $110.0 million compared to $111.4 million for the year ended December 31, 2011. The decrease in interest expense was the result of lower interest incurred on our Revolving Facility and our Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility of approximately $3.3 million due to lower average borrowings in 2012 compared to 2011 and an increase in capitalized interest by $4.4 million due to an increase in capital projects. These decreases were offset by an increase of $8.6 million interest expense on our Senior Secured Credit Facility as a result of the amendment completed in August 2012, wherein our borrowing rate increased by 2.0%.

Loss on Extinguishment of Long-Term Debt

Loss on extinguishment of debt was $55.7 million for the year ended December 31, 2011 related to the February 2, 2011 amendment of our Senior Secured Credit Facility and the related extinguishment of $749.0 million of our then outstanding term loans. The loss on extinguishment of debt was comprised of $7.5 million in fees paid to the lenders, $0.2 million in third-party fees associated with modifying the term loans under our Senior Secured Credit Facility, with the remainder attributable to the write-off of existing unamortized deferred financing fees and original issue discount attributed to the term loans totaling $34.0 million and $14.0 million, respectively. There was no loss on extinguishment of debt recognized in the year ended December 31, 2012.

Other Expense (Income), net

Other expense for the year ended December 31, 2012 was $24.0 million compared to other income of $20.1 million for the year ended December 31, 2011.

Other expense for the year ended December 31, 2012 includes foreign exchange transaction losses of $22.8 million, which were primarily driven by the remeasurement of our euro payables to the U.S. dollar as well as unrealized losses on our foreign exchange forward contracts of approximately $3.8 million. In addition, we incurred approximately $2.3 million of third-party fees associated with the 2012 amendment of our Senior Secured Credit Facility.

Other income for the year ended December 31, 2011 was primarily related to foreign exchange transaction gains of $17.2 million and indemnification matters from Dow which were recorded as other income. The foreign exchange transaction gains in 2011 were primarily driven by the remeasurement of our euro payables to the U.S. dollar.

Provision for Income Taxes

Provision for income taxes for 2012 totaled $17.5 million resulting in an effective tax rate of 36.6%. Provision for income taxes for 2011 totaled $39.8 million resulting in a negative effective tax rate of 109.8%.

The 2012 effective tax rate was unfavorably impacted by non-deductible expenses resulting in an $8.9 million difference from the U.S. statutory rate, of which $5.2 million related to non-deductible interest expense and $2.5 million related to non-deductible stock-based compensation. In 2011, these non-deductible expenses were $9.0 million. Further, provision for income taxes included $7.1 million of tax expense related to withholding taxes as compared to $8.6 million in 2011.

 

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Offsetting these negative impacts was approximately $3.6 million of favorable impact of jurisdictions where the statutory income tax rate is lower than the United States statutory rate compared to $1.2 million in 2011. Further, favorable impacts for 2012 are from tax credits of $2.9 million and a release of a valuation allowance in the fourth quarter of 2012 of $14.4 million, primarily as a result of improvements in actual business operations and projected future results of our subsidiaries in China and Hong Kong.

In 2012, although we had a net loss before income tax in jurisdictions outside the United States of $1.4 million, certain jurisdictions with statutory rates lower than the United States statutory rate generated income before taxes of $33.8 million and related income tax expense of approximately $5.8 million. These jurisdictions included the Netherlands, Indonesia and China. The losses we generated from jurisdictions outside of the United States were approximately $35.2 million with a related income tax benefit of $3.0 million. Those jurisdictions primarily included Luxembourg which did not provide a tax benefit to us due to recurring losses.

Selected Segment Information

The following tables present net sales and EBITDA by segment and as a percentage of total net sales and net sales by segment, respectively, for the following periods:

 

     Year Ended
December 31,
 
     2013     2012     2011  
     (in millions)  

Net sales(1)

      

Latex segment

   $ 1,341.4      $ 1,545.1      $ 1,843.5   

Synthetic Rubber segment

     622.1        701.9        849.5   

Styrenics segment

     2,305.4        2,149.2        2,307.0   

Engineered Polymers segment

     1,038.5        1,055.7        1,192.9   

Corporate unallocated(2)

     —          —          —     
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Total

   $ 5,307.4      $ 5,451.9      $ 6,192.9   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

EBITDA(3)

      

Latex segment

   $ 95.4      $ 125.5      $ 121.5   

Synthetic Rubber segment

     113.5        111.1        174.6   

Styrenics segment

     160.7        82.9        72.2   

Engineered Polymers segment

     (9.1     31.5        26.3   

Corporate unallocated(2)

     (133.7     (107.6     (217.7
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Total

   $ 226.8      $ 243.4      $ 176.9   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

     Year Ended
December 31,
 
     2013     2012     2011  

Net sales(1)

      

Latex segment

     25.3     28.3     29.8

Synthetic Rubber segment

     11.7     12.9     13.7

Styrenics segment

     43.4     39.4     37.3

Engineered Polymers segment

     19.6     19.4     19.2

Corporate unallocated(2)

     0.0     0.0     0.0
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Total

     100.0     100.0     100.0
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

EBITDA(3)

      

Latex segment

     7.1     8.1     6.6

Synthetic Rubber segment

     18.2     15.8     20.6

Styrenics segment

     7.0     3.9     3.1

Engineered Polymers segment

     (0.9 )%      3.0     2.2

Corporate unallocated(2)

     (2.5 )%      (2.0 )%      (3.5 )% 
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Total

     4.3     4.5     2.9
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

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(1) Inter-segment sales have been eliminated.
(2) Corporate unallocated includes corporate overhead costs, loss on extinguishment of long term debt, and certain other income and expenses. Percentages for Corporate unallocated are based on total sales.
(3) EBITDA is a non-GAAP measure that in making operating decisions because we believe it provides meaningful supplemental information regarding our operational performance. For a reconciliation of EBITDA to net income, see Note 3 to “Summary Consolidated Financial and Other Data.”

Latex Segment

We are a global leader in SB latex, holding a strong market position across the geographies and applications in which we compete, including the #1 position in SB latex in Europe and the #2 position in North America. We produce SB latex primarily for coated paper used in advertising and magazines, packaging board coatings, carpet and artificial turf backings, as well as a number of performance latex applications. In 2013, approximately half of our Latex segment’s net sales were generated in Europe, approximately 25% were generated in the United States and the remainder was generated in Asia and other geographies.

Year Ended December 31, 2013 Compared to the Year Ended December 31, 2012

Net sales for 2013 decreased by $203.7 million, or 13.2%, to $1,341.4 million from $1,545.1 million for 2012. Of the 13.2% decrease in net sales, approximately 9.6% was due to lower selling prices primarily from the pass through of lower butadiene cost as well as increased competition in the Europe and Asia paper markets. Lower sales volume, approximately 4.7% of the total impact, was primarily driven by lower demand and increasing competition in the Europe and Asia paper markets. These decreases were partially offset by a 1.1% favorable currency impact as the U.S. dollar weakened compared to the euro.

EBITDA for 2013 decreased by $30.1 million, or 24.0%, to $95.4 million from $125.5 million in 2012. Of this decrease, 16.5% was driven by lower sales volume and margins due to lower demand and continued increases in competition in the Europe and Asia paper markets. An additional 8.6% of the decrease relates to restructuring charges of $10.8 million recorded in 2013 in connection with the closure of the latex plant in Australia.

Year Ended December 31, 2012 Compared to the Year Ended December 31, 2011

Net sales for 2012 decreased by $298.4 million, or 16.2%, to $1,545.1 million from $1,843.5 million for 2011. Of the 16.2% decrease in net sales, 9.9% was driven by a decline in sales volume primarily due to lower demand in European and North American paper markets and 6.3% was due to lower selling prices, which includes a 3.7% unfavorable currency impact due to the strengthening of the U.S. dollar as compared to the euro.

EBITDA for 2012 increased by $4.0 million, or 3.3%, to $125.5 million from $121.5 million in 2011. This increase was primarily driven by our fixed cost improvements from prior year due to the cost reduction efforts implemented during 2011 and 2012 as well as improvement on margin due to favorable timing of contractual pass through of lower raw materials prices. These items resulted in a 31.9% increase in EBITDA, which were partially offset by a decline in sales volumes of 27.8% and a 2.8% net unfavorable currency impact due to the strengthening of the U.S. dollar as compared to the euro.

Synthetic Rubber Segment

We are a significant producer of styrene-butadiene and polybutadiene-based rubber products and we have a leading European market position in SSBR. While 100% of our sales were generated in Europe in 2013, approximately 15% of these net sales were exported to Asia, 8% to Latin America and 5% to North America.

We have a broad synthetic rubber technology and product portfolio, focusing on specialty products, such as SSBR and Li-PBR, while also producing core products, such as ESBR and Ni-PBR. Our synthetic rubber

 

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products are extensively used in tires, with an estimated 86% of our net sales from this segment in 2013 attributable to the tire market. We estimate that three quarters of these sales relate to replacement tires. We have strong relationships with many of the top global tire manufacturers and believe we have remained a supplier of choice as a result of our broad rubber portfolio and ability to offer technologically differentiated product and product customization capabilities. Other applications for our synthetic rubber products include polymer modification and technical rubber goods.

Year Ended December 31, 2013 Compared to Year Ended December 31, 2012

Net sales for 2013 decreased by $79.8 million, or 11.4%, to $622.1 million from $701.9 million in 2012. Of the 11.4% decrease in net sales, 18.2%, net of an approximately 1.8% favorable currency impact as the U.S. dollar weakened compared to the euro, was due to lower selling prices mostly from lower butadiene costs passed through to customers and some reduction in selling prices due to weakened economic conditions in the tire market. The decrease was partially offset by an increase in sales volume of approximately 6.8% due to the SSBR capacity expansion completed in the fourth quarter of 2012 and lower sales in the second quarter of 2012 due to the scheduled plant turnaround.

EBITDA for 2013 increased by $2.4 million, or 2.2%, to $113.5 million from $111.1 million for 2012. Higher volume, from the SSBR expansion with some offset from a weaker tire market, contributed a 29.0% increase in EBITDA and a slightly favorable currency impact, as the U.S. dollar weakened compared to the euro, contributed 2.1%. These increases were offset by lower margins, driven by weaker tire market conditions and less favorable timing of contractual pass through of raw material prices, and higher fixed costs, due to SSBR capacity expansions, which contributed to a 28.9% decrease in EBITDA from 2012.

Year Ended December 31, 2012 Compared to the Year Ended December 31, 2011

Net sales for 2012 decreased by $147.6 million, or 17.4%, to $701.9 million from $849.5 million in 2011. Of the 17.4% decrease in net sales, 7.1% was driven by lower sales volume mainly due to lost production from a six-week long major maintenance turnaround during the second quarter of 2012. The decrease was also due to lower selling prices from lower raw materials cost pass-throughs to customers resulting in an unfavorable impact on net sales of 10.3%, which includes unfavorable currency impact of approximately 5.8% due primarily to the strengthening of the U.S. dollar as compared to the euro.

EBITDA for 2012 decreased by $63.5 million, or 36.4%, to $111.1 million from $174.6 million for 2011. Of this decrease, 11.3% was primarily driven by lower margins, as we had higher margin on non-contractual sales in the prior year due to raw material market dynamics, and 16.8% was driven by lower sales volume mainly due to lost production from a major maintenance turnaround and lower demand during the second quarter. We estimate that the impact of this turnaround was the loss of approximately $10.0 million in EBITDA from lost volumes and production, as well as costs associated with the turnaround process. In addition, we had approximately 4.0% net unfavorable currency impact due to the strengthening of the U.S. dollar as compared to the euro.

Styrenics Segment

Our Styrenics segment includes polystyrene, ABS and SAN products, as well as our internal production and sourcing of styrene monomer, a raw material common in SB latex, synthetic rubber and styrenics products. We are a leading producer of polystyrene and mass ABS, or mABS, where we focus our efforts on differentiated applications such as the liners and encasements of appliances and consumer electronics including smartphones and tablets. Within these applications, we have worked collaboratively with customers to develop more advanced grades of plastics such as our HIPS and mABS products. For example, we work with appliance manufacturers around the world to develop improved environmental stress crack resistant products and with our construction sheet customers on smooth ABS. These products offer superior properties, such as rigidity, insulation and

 

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colorability, and, in some cases, an improved environmental footprint compared to general purpose polystyrene or emulsion ABS. Our Styrenics segment also serves the packaging and construction end-markets, where we have launched a new general purpose polystyrene product for improved performance in foam insulation applications.

Year Ended December 31, 2013 Compared to Year Ended December 31, 2012

Net sales for 2013 increased by $156.2 million, or 7.3%, to $2,305.4 million from $2,149.2 million in 2012. Of the 7.3% increase in net sales, 7.4% was driven by increases in selling prices due to higher styrene monomer prices, as well as actions to increase selling prices to improve margins. Also, the weakening of the U.S. dollar compared to the euro had a favorable impact to our net sales of approximately 1.9%. These increases were partially offset by a 2.0% decrease in sales volume with half of that net impact attributable to the divestiture our EPS business to Ravago and the remainder driven by customers’ inventory optimization efforts, as a result of price increases in styrene monomer.

EBITDA for 2013 increased by $77.8 million, or 93.8%, to $160.7 million from $82.9 million in 2012. This increase is attributable mainly to higher margins in styrene monomer production, margin improvement initiatives, and more favorable industry dynamics with lower supply in Europe which contributed to a combined 92.9% increase in EBITDA from 2012. Also, the weakening of the U.S. dollar compared to the euro had a net favorable currency impact of approximately 3.7%. These increases were slightly offset by decreases of approximately 7.3% due to lower volume and 5.1% due to the $4.2 million loss on sale of the EPS business completed in September 2013.

Year Ended December 31, 2012 Compared to the Year Ended December 31, 2011

Net sales for 2012 decreased by $157.8 million, or 6.8%, to $2,149.2 million from $2,307.0 million in 2011. Of the 6.8% decrease in net sales, 4.1% was driven by a decline in sales volume due to a weaker market and 5.3% was driven by the negative currency impact of the strengthening of the U.S. dollar as compared to the euro. These decreases were offset by a 2.6% increase in selling prices during the year primarily due to higher costs of raw materials that were able to be passed onto customers.

EBITDA for 2012 increased by $10.7 million, or 14.8%, to $82.9 million from $72.2 million in 2011. This increase was primarily driven by fixed cost improvements from prior year due to the cost reduction efforts implemented during 2011 and 2012 along with improvement in margins. These factors resulted in an approximate 30.3% increase in EBITDA, which was partially offset by a 9.7% decrease in sales volume and an 8.2% unfavorable currency impact from the strengthening of the U.S. dollar compared to the euro.

Engineered Polymers Segment

We are a leading producer of engineered polymers. Our products are predominantly used in the automotive, consumer electronics, construction, and medical device markets. We are focused on differentiated products which we produce in our polymer and compounds and blends manufacturing facilities located across Europe, Asia, North America and Latin America. We believe that the strategic locations of these facilities combined with close customer collaboration offers us a strategic advantage in serving our customers. Many of our PC products and more than half of our compounds and blends products are differentiated, based on their physical properties, performance and aesthetic advantages. Our history of innovation has contributed to long-standing relationships with customers who are recognized leaders in their respective end-markets. We have established a strong market presence in the global automotive and electronics sector, targeting both component suppliers and final product manufacturers. Our Engineered Polymers segment also compounds and blends our PC and mABS plastics into differentiated products for customers within these sectors, as well as into compounds of polypropylene. We have also developed compounds containing post-consumer recycle polymers to respond to what we believe is a growing need for some customers to include recycled content in their products. We are currently focused on reducing costs in order to improve our competitiveness in polycarbonate.

 

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Year Ended December 31, 2013 Compared to Year Ended December 31, 2012

Net sales for 2013 decreased by $17.2 million, or 1.6%, to $1,038.5 million from $1,055.7 million in 2012. Of the 1.6% decrease in net sales, 0.8% was driven by lower sales volume and 2.2% was driven by lower selling prices primarily due to continued competitive challenges in polycarbonate markets. These decreases were partially offset by a 1.3% favorable currency impact as the U.S. dollar weakened compared to the euro.

EBITDA for 2013 decreased by $40.6 million, or 128.9%, to negative $9.1 million from positive $31.5 million in 2012. This decrease was primarily due to continued losses in the polycarbonate business as the market remains extremely competitive, especially given current unfavorable supply and demand dynamics. In addition, the automotive market in Europe has weakened compared to 2012 and margin in our automotive products in Latin America was unfavorably impacted by the strengthening of the U.S. dollar compared to the Brazilian real resulting in an approximate 13.9% negative impact to our EBITDA. Further, the weakening of the U.S. dollar compared to the euro resulted in an unfavorable currency impact of approximately 4.2%. This decrease in EBITDA also includes a loss of approximately $9.2 million related to the impairment of fixed assets at our polycarbonate manufacturing facility in Stade, Germany.

Year Ended December 31, 2012 Compared to the Year Ended December 31, 2011

Net sales for 2012 decreased by $137.2 million, or 11.5%, to $1,055.7 million from $1,192.9 million in 2011. Of the 11.5% decrease in net sales, approximately 3.8% was driven by lower sales volume due to strong competitive pressures specifically within the polycarbonate markets and 7.7% was due to lower selling prices, which includes an unfavorable currency impact of approximately 4.2% due to the strengthening of the U.S. dollar as compared to the euro.

EBITDA for 2012 increased by $5.2 million, or 19.8%, to $31.5 million from $26.3 million in 2011. The increase was due to the cost reduction efforts implemented during 2011 and 2012 and higher margins on our automotive products, as well as a 7.5% favorable currency impact as the U.S. dollar strengthened compared to the euro. These increases were offset by decreases due to lower margins on our polycarbonate products, driven mostly by competitive pressures, particularly in Europe.

Liquidity and Capital Resources

Cash Flows

The table below summarizes our primary sources and uses of cash for the years ended December 31, 2013, 2012 and 2011. We have derived the summarized cash flow information from our audited financial statements.

 

     Year Ended
December 31,
 
     2013     2012     2011  
     (in millions)  

Net cash provided by (used in):

      

Operating activities

   $ 211.3      $ 186.1      $ 151.1   

Investing activities

     (33.4     (117.3     (99.1

Financing activities

     (220.2     (77.2     44.9   

Effect of exchange rates on cash

     2.4        (0.6     0.3   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Net change in cash and cash equivalents

   $ (39.9   $ (9.0   $ 97.2   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Operating Activities

Net cash provided by operating activities during the year ended December 31, 2013 totaled $211.3 million, with net cash provided by operating assets and liabilities totaling $92.5 million. The most significant components of

 

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the changes in operating assets and liabilities for the year ended December 31, 2013 of $92.5 million were increases in accounts payable and other current liabilities of $15.0 million, and a decrease in inventory of $55.4 million. Increase in accounts payable and other current liabilities was mainly due to timing of payments in the normal course of business plus lesser interest payments in 2013 on the Senior Notes as interest payments are due semi-annually in August and February each year compared to interest on the Term Loans which were paid quarterly in the prior year. Decrease in inventory was due to lower raw materials prices during 2013, as well as a decrease in volumes compared to the fourth quarter of 2012, due to higher inventory volumes on hand at the end of 2012 resulting from our rubber capacity expansion project placed in operation in the fourth quarter of 2012. Additionally, in 2013 we received $22.5 million from our unconsolidated affiliate, AmSty, as a return on our investment. Overall, cash flow from operating activities was primarily driven by improvement in cash collection during the year and lesser cash outflow on purchases due to inventory build in 2012 and lower raw materials prices in 2013.

Net cash provided by operating activities during the year ended December 31, 2012 totaled $186.1 million, with net cash provided by operating assets and liabilities totaling $55.3 million. The most significant components of the changes in operating assets and liabilities for the year ended December 31, 2012 of $55.3 million were decreases in accounts receivable and income taxes payable of $84.7 million and $5.1 million, respectively, and increases in inventory and accounts payable and other current liabilities of $87.2 million and $67.9 million, respectively. Increases in inventory and accounts payable and other current liabilities are primarily due to increases in inventory during the fourth quarter of 2012 for our new rubber capacity expansion project placed in operation in October 2012. The decrease in accounts receivable reflects both a decrease in sales during the fourth quarter of 2012 driven by the decrease in sales volume as well as continued improvements in receivable collection efforts. In addition, despite the decreases in sales, we conserved the use of cash in our operations due to various cost savings initiatives implemented during the year. Net cash paid for income taxes during the year was approximately $20.4 million. Additionally, in 2012 we received $20.0 million in dividends from our unconsolidated affiliate, AmSty, as a return on our investment.

Net cash provided by operating activities during the year ended December 31, 2011 totaled $151.1 million, with net cash provided by operating assets and liabilities totaling $54.4 million. The most significant components of the change for the year ended December 31, 2011 of $54.4 million were a decrease in inventory of $53.9 million, a decrease in accounts receivable of $67.0 million, a decrease of $37.7 million in accounts payable and other current liabilities, a $27.6 million decrease in income taxes payable and a prepayment penalty of $7.7 million related to our extinguishment of long-term debt. Decreases in inventory and accounts payable and other current liabilities reflect our effort to reduce working capital and lower production volume during the fourth quarter of 2011. The decrease in accounts receivable reflects both a decrease in sales driven by volume declines during the fourth quarter of 2011 as well as improvements in receivable collection efforts. Additionally, in 2011 we received $10.0 million in dividends from our unconsolidated affiliate, AmSty, as a return on our investment.

Investing Activities

Net cash used in investing activities for the year ended December 31, 2013 totaled $33.4 million, consisting primarily of capital expenditures of $54.8 million during the period, net of proceeds received from a government subsidy of $18.8 million related to our capital expansion project at our rubber facility in Schkopau, Germany. Also offsetting these capital expenditures were cash proceeds of $15.2 million received from the sale of our EPS business during the year as well as cash proceeds of $7.9 million released from restrictions related to our accounts receivable securitization facility. Refer to Note C of the consolidated financial statements for details on the EPS business divestiture.

Net cash used in investing activities for the year ended December 31, 2012 totaled $117.3 million, consisting primarily of capital expenditures of $112.4 million, net of proceeds from a government subsidy of $6.1 million; $69.2 million of capital expenditures, net of subsidy, was related to our capital expansion project at our rubber facility in Schkopau, Germany.

 

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Net cash used in investing activities for the year ended December 31, 2011 totaled $99.1 million consisting primarily of capital expenditures of $99.8 million of which $54.8 million was related to our capital project implemented at our rubber facility in Schkopau, Germany. Investing activities also included payment of $6.3 million to our Brazilian partner representing its 50% share of the proceeds from the sale of our assets in Styrenics Brazilian operations, partially offset by distributions from our unconsolidated affiliate, Sumika Styron, of $7.2 million representing a return of our investment.

Financing Activities

Net cash used in financing activities during the year ended December 31, 2013 totaled $220.2 million. During the period, we repaid our outstanding Term Loans of $1,239.0 million using the proceeds from the issuance of $1,325.0 million in Senior Notes issued in January 2013. In connection with the issuance of the Senior Notes and the amendments to our Senior Secured Credit Facility and our Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility, we paid approximately $48.3 million of refinancing fees. In addition, during the period, we continued to utilize our Revolving Facility and our Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility to fund our working capital requirements. During the year ended December 31, 2013, our borrowings and repayments to our Revolving Facility were $405.0 million and $525.0 million, respectively, and we had net repayments to our Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility of $95.1 million.

Net cash used in financing activities during the year ended December 31, 2012 totaled $77.2 million. We had borrowings from our Revolving Facility and our Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility throughout the year to fund our working capital requirements, and repaid those borrowings from funds generated from operating activities. During the year ended December 31, 2012, our borrowings and repayments to our Revolving Facility were $1,105.0 million and $1,135.0 million, respectively, and our net repayments to our Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility were $16.4 million. Also, during the year ended December 31, 2012, we paid $147.0 million of the then outstanding Term Loans, of which $140.0 million was the required payment for the effectiveness of the fourth amendment to the Senior Secured Credit Facility. Further, in May 2012, we received an approximate $22.2 million equity contribution from our Parent in order to cure an event of default that occurred for the period ended March 31, 2012. In August 2012, we received a $140.0 million cash contribution from our Parent and used the proceeds to repay a portion of our then outstanding Term Loans (as mentioned above).

Net cash provided by financing activities during the year ended December 31, 2011 totaled $44.9 million. In February 2011, we received $1,379.4 million of additional proceeds from the Term Loans under our Senior Secured Credit Facility, net of deferred financing fees of $20.3 million. Such proceeds from the Term Loans borrowed in 2011 were used to repay $75.0 million of our Seller Note with Dow and the related interest and $780.0 million that was previously outstanding under the Term Loans and related interest. Additionally, we made a $521.5 million distribution to our shareholder. We also had borrowings from our Revolving Facility and our Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility throughout the year to fund our working capital requirements, and repaid those borrowings from funds generated from operating activities. Our net borrowings from these facilities in 2011 were $20.0 million and $35.2 million, respectively.

 

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Indebtedness and Liquidity

The following table outlines our outstanding indebtedness as of December 31, 2013 and December 31, 2012 and the associated interest expense, including amortization of deferred financing fees and debt discounts, and effective interest rates for such borrowings at December 31, 2013 and December 31, 2012. Note that the effective interest rates below exclude the impact of deferred financing fees.

 

     As of December 31, 2013      As of December 31, 2012  
     Balance      Effective
Interest
Rate
    Interest
Expense
     Balance      Effective
Interest
Rate
    Interest
Expense
 
     (dollars in millions)  

Senior Secured Credit Facility

               

Term Loans

   $ —           n/a      $ 8.0       $ 1,232.6        6.9   $ 94.6  

Revolving Facility

     —           6.6     5.7         120.0         7.7     9.5   

Senior Notes

     1,325.0         8.8     111.9         —           n/a        —     

Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility

     —           3.1     5.6         93.5         3.5     6.1   

Other Indebtedness

     11.4         1.6     0.1         7.5         2.0     0.2   
  

 

 

      

 

 

    

 

 

      

 

 

 

Total

   $ 1,336.4         $ 131.3       $ 1,453.6         $ 110.4   
  

 

 

      

 

 

    

 

 

      

 

 

 

Senior Secured Credit Facility

In January 2013, we amended our Senior Secured Credit Facility, which we refer to as the 2013 amendment. As part of the 2013 amendment, we increased our Revolving Facility capacity from $240.0 million to $300.0 million, decreased the borrowing rate of the Revolving Facility through a decrease in the applicable margin rate from 4.75% to 3.00% as applied to base rate loans (which shall bear interest at a rate per annum equal to the base rate plus the applicable margin (as defined therein)), or 5.75% to 4.00% as applied to LIBO rate loans (which shall bear interest at a rate per annum equal to the LIBO rate plus the applicable margin plus the mandatory cost (as defined therein), if applicable), extended the maturity date to January 2018 and concurrently repaid our then outstanding Term Loans of $1,239.0 million using the proceeds from our sale of $1,325 million aggregate principal amount of the Senior Notes issued in January 2013. The 2013 amendment replaced our total leverage ratio requirement with a springing first lien net leverage ratio (as defined under the 2013 amendment) and removed the interest coverage ratio requirement. If the outstanding balance under the Revolving Facility exceeds 25% of the $300.0 million borrowing capacity (excluding undrawn letters of credit up to $10.0 million) at a quarter end, then our first lien net leverage ratio may not exceed 5.25 to 1.00 for the quarter ending March 31, 2013, 5.00 to 1.00 for the subsequent quarters through December 31, 2013, 4.50 to 1.00 for each of the quarters ending in 2014 and 4.25 to 1.00 for each of the quarters ending in 2015 and thereafter.

As a result of the 2013 amendment and repayment of the then outstanding amount under the Term Loans in January 2013, we recognized $20.7 million of a loss on extinguishment of debt during 2013, which consisted of the write-off of existing unamortized deferred financing fees and debt discount attributable to the Term Loans. Fees and expenses incurred in connection with the 2013 amendment were $5.5 million, which were capitalized within “Deferred charges and other assets” in the December 31, 2013 consolidated balance sheet and amortized into interest expense over the remaining term of the Revolving Facility using the straight-line method.

There are no amounts outstanding under the Revolving Facility as of December 31, 2013. Available borrowings under the Revolving Facility totaled $292.7 million (net of $7.3 million of outstanding letters of credit) as of December 31, 2013.

Senior Notes

In January 2013, we issued $1,325.0 million aggregate principal of our 8.750% Senior Notes due 2019. Interest on the notes is payable semi-annually on February 1st and August 1st of each year, commencing on

 

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August 1, 2013. The Senior Notes will mature and be due in full on February 1, 2019. The proceeds from the issuance of the Senior Notes were used to repay all of our then outstanding Term Loans under the Senior Secured Credit Facility and related refinancing fees and expenses.

We may redeem all or part of the Senior Notes at any time prior to August 1, 2015 by paying a make-whole premium, plus accrued and unpaid interest to the redemption date. We may redeem all or part of the Senior Notes at any time after August 1, 2015 at a redemption price equal to the percentage of principal amount set forth below plus accrued and unpaid interest, if any, on the notes redeemed, to the applicable date of redemption, if redeemed during the twelve-month period beginning on of the year indicated below:

 

12-month period commencing August 1 in Year

   Percentage  

2015

     104.375

2016

     102.188

2017 and thereafter

     100.000

In addition, at any time prior to August 1, 2015, we may redeem up to 35% of the aggregate principal amount of the notes at a redemption price equal to 108.750% of the face amount thereof plus accrued and unpaid interest, if any, to the redemption date, with the net cash proceeds that we raise in certain equity offerings. We may also redeem, during any 12-month period commencing from the issue date until August 1, 2015, up to 10% of the original principal amount of the notes at a redemption price equal to 103% of the principal amount thereof, plus accrued and unpaid interest, if any, to, but not including, the date of redemption.

In connection with the issuance of Senior Notes, we also entered into a Registration Rights Agreement, pursuant to which we are required to prepare and file with the SEC a registration statement covering an offer to the holders of the Original Notes to exchange all of their notes for notes that have been registered under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended. We filed the Registration Statement with the SEC on September 30, 2013, which was subsequently amended and supplemented. Such Registration Statement was declared effective by the SEC on January 29, 2014, and the exchange offer closed on March 4, 2014.

The Senior Notes are unconditionally guaranteed on a senior secured basis by Trinseo S.A., Styron Luxco S.à r.l, Styron Holding, S.à r.l, Trinseo Materials S.à r.l., Styron Investment Holdings Ireland and each of Trinseo Materials Operating S.C.A.’s existing and future wholly-owned subsidiaries that guarantee our Senior Secured Credit Facility, other than our subsidiaries, Styron France S.A.S. and Styron Spain S.L. The notes and the guarantees are collateralized by a security interest in substantially all of the assets of the issuers and the guarantors thereunder. The notes and guarantees rank equally in right of payment with all of our existing and future senior secured debt and, subject to the immediately succeeding sentence, are effectively pari passu with our indebtedness that is secured by first-priority liens, including the Senior Secured Credit Facility, to the extent of the value of the collateral securing such indebtedness and ranking senior in right of payment to all of our existing and future subordinated debt. However, claims under the Senior Notes will effectively rank behind the claims of holders of debt, including interest, under our Senior Secured Credit Facility in respect of proceeds from any enforcement action with respect to the collateral or in any bankruptcy, insolvency or liquidation proceeding. The guarantees will be structurally subordinated to all of the liabilities of each of our subsidiaries that do not guarantee the notes.

The indenture governing our Senior Notes contains covenants that, among other things, limit our ability and the ability of our restricted subsidiaries to incur additional indebtedness, pay dividends or make other distributions, subject to certain exceptions. If the notes are assigned an investment grade by the rating agencies and no default has occurred or is continuing, certain covenants will be suspended. If the ratings on the notes decline to below investment grade, the suspended covenants will be reinstated.

Fees and expenses incurred in connection with the issuance of the Senior Notes were approximately $42.0 million, which were capitalized and included within “Deferred charges and other assets” in our

 

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consolidated balance sheet. These deferred charges are being amortized using the effective interest rate method and reflected in “Interest expense, net” in the consolidated statement of operations. For a full description of our Revolving Facility and our Senior Notes, see “Description of Indebtedness.”

Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility

In August 2010, Styron Receivables Funding Ltd., which we refer to as Styron Funding, a variable interest entity in which we are the primary beneficiary, entered into an accounts receivable securitization facility with HSBC Bank Plc. The initial facility permitted borrowings by our Swiss subsidiary guarantor, Styron Europe GmbH, which we refer to as Styron Europe, of up to a total of $160.0 million. Under the facility, Styron Europe will sell its accounts receivable from time to time to Styron Funding. In turn, Styron Funding may sell undivided ownership interests in such receivables to commercial paper conduits in exchange for cash. We have agreed to continue servicing the receivables for Styron Funding. Upon the sale of the interests in the accounts receivable by Styron Funding, the conduits have a first priority perfected security interest in such receivables and, as a result, the receivables will not be available to our creditors or those of our subsidiaries.

In May 2011, the accounts receivable securitization facility was amended to allow for the expansion of the pool of eligible accounts receivable to include a previously excluded German subsidiary. In May 2013, we further amended the accounts receivable securitization facility which increased our borrowing capacity from $160.0 million to $200.0 million, extended the maturity date to May 2016, lowered our borrowing cost, and allows for the expansion of the pool of eligible accounts receivable to include our previously not included U.S. and Netherlands subsidiaries. As a result of the amendment, we incurred $0.7 million in fees, which were capitalized within “Deferred charges and other assets” in the consolidated balance sheet and amortized into interest expense using the straight-line method over the remaining term.

The accounts receivable securitization facility is subject to interest charges against both the amount of outstanding borrowings as well as the amount of available, but undrawn borrowings. As a result of the amendment to our accounts receivable securitization facility in May 2013 noted above, we lowered our borrowing costs. In regards to the outstanding borrowings, fixed interest charges were decreased from 3.25% plus variable commercial paper rates to 2.6% plus variable commercial paper rates. In regards to available, but undrawn borrowings, fixed interest charges were decreased from 1.50% to 1.40%.

As of December 31, 2013, there was approximately $143.8 million of accounts receivable available to support this facility, based on our pool of eligible accounts receivable. As of December 31, 2013, there were no outstanding borrowings under this facility.

Other Indebtedness

As of December 31, 2013, we had $5.1 million of outstanding borrowings under our short-term revolving credit facility through our subsidiary in China that provides for up to $15.0 million of uncommitted funds available for borrowings, subject to the availability of collateral. The facility is subject to annual renewal.

Our Senior Secured Credit Facility limits our foreign working capital facilities to an aggregate principal amount of $75.0 million and further limits our foreign working capital facilities in certain jurisdictions in Asia, including China, to an aggregate principal amount of $25.0 million, except as otherwise permitted by the Senior Secured Credit Facility.

Derivative Instruments

Foreign Exchange Forward Contracts

We manage our exposure to changes in foreign currency exchange rates where possible by paying expenses in the same currency in which we generate sales in a particular country as well as using derivative contracts which are not designated for hedge accounting treatment. During 2012, we entered into foreign exchange forward

 

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contracts that were not designated as hedging instruments to manage volatility in foreign currency exposures. As of December 31, 2012, we had open foreign exchange forward contracts with various expiration dates to buy euro currency with a notional U.S. dollar equivalent of $82.0 million. The fair value of the foreign exchange forward contracts amounted to $3.8 million as of December 31, 2012 recorded in “Accounts payable” in the consolidated balance sheet. As these foreign exchange forward contracts were not designated for hedge accounting treatment, changes in the fair value of underlying instruments are recognized in “Other expense (income)” in the consolidated statement of operations.

These contracts were settled in February and May 2013 and no contracts were outstanding as of December 31, 2013. We recognized a loss of $0.6 million and a loss of $4.8 million during the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, respectively.

Capital Resources and Liquidity

Our sources of liquidity include cash on hand, cash flow from operations and amounts available under the Senior Secured Credit Facility and the Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility. We believe, based on our current level of operations, that these sources of liquidity will be sufficient to fund our operations, capital expenditures and debt service for at least the next twelve months.

Our liquidity requirements are significant due to our highly leveraged nature, as well as our working capital requirements. As of December 31, 2013, we had $1,336.4 million in outstanding indebtedness and $810.2 million in working capital. As of December 31, 2012, we had $1,453.6 million in outstanding indebtedness and $778.1 million in working capital. As of December 31, 2013 and December 31, 2012, we had $74.0 million and $39.9 million of foreign cash and cash equivalents on our balance sheet, respectively, all of which is readily convertible into other foreign currencies, including the U.S. dollar. Our intention is not to permanently reinvest our foreign cash and cash equivalents. Accordingly, we record deferred income tax liabilities related to the unremitted earnings of our subsidiaries.

As discussed above, in January 2013, we repaid our outstanding Term Loans of $1,239.0 million through issuance of $1,325.0 million in Senior Notes. Concurrently, with this repayment, we amended our Senior Secured Credit Facility to increase our Revolving Facility borrowing capacity from $240.0 million to $300.0 million. Also, in May 2013, we amended our Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility to increase our borrowing capacity from $160.0 million to $200.0 million, extended the maturity date to May 2016 and expanded the pool of eligible accounts receivable to include previously excluded U.S. and Netherlands subsidiaries. These amendments to our facilities provide for additional liquidity resources for us.

Our ability to raise additional financing and our borrowing costs may be impacted by short and long-term debt ratings assigned by independent rating agencies, which are based, in significant part, on our performance as measured by certain credit metrics such as interest coverage and leverage ratios.

We cannot make assurances that our business will generate sufficient cash flow from operations or that future borrowings will be available to us under the Senior Secured Credit Facility in an amount sufficient to enable us to pay our indebtedness, or to fund our other liquidity needs. Further, our highly leveraged nature may limit our ability to procure additional financing in the future. As of December 31, 2013 and December 31, 2012, we were in compliance with all the covenants and default provisions under our credit arrangements.

We believe that funds provided by operations, our existing cash and cash equivalent balances, borrowings available under our Revolving Facility and borrowings available under our accounts receivable facility will be adequate to meet planned operating and capital expenditures for at least the next 12 months under current operating conditions. However, if we were to undertake any significant acquisitions or investments, it may be necessary for us to obtain additional debt or equity financings. We may not be able to obtain such financing on reasonable terms, or at all.

 

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Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk

We are exposed to changes in interest rates and foreign currency exchange rates because we finance certain operations through fixed and variable rate debt instruments and denominate our transactions in a variety of foreign currencies. We are also exposed to changes in the prices of certain commodities that we use in production. Changes in these rates and commodity prices may have an impact on future cash flow and earnings. We manage these risks through normal operating and financing activities and, when deemed appropriate, through the use of derivative financial instruments. We do not enter into financial instruments for trading or speculative purposes.

By using derivative instruments, we are subject to credit and market risk. The fair market value of the derivative instruments is determined by using valuation models whose inputs are derived using market observable inputs, including interest rate yield curves, as well as foreign exchange and commodity spot and forward rates, and reflects the asset or liability position as of the end of each reporting period. When the fair value of a derivative contract is positive, the counterparty owes us, thus creating a receivable risk for us. We are exposed to counterparty credit risk in the event of non-performance by counterparties to our derivative agreements. We minimize counterparty credit (or repayment) risk by entering into transactions with major financial institutions of investment grade credit rating.

Our exposure to market risk is not hedged in a manner that completely eliminates the effects of changing market conditions on earnings or cash flow.

Interest Rate Risk

Given the leveraged nature of our Company, we have exposure to changes in interest rates. From time to time, we may execute a variety of interest rate derivative instruments to manage interest rate risk.

We use interest rate cap agreements to protect cash flows from fluctuations caused by volatility in interest rates. At December 31, 2012, we had three outstanding interest rate caps with an aggregate notional amount of $490.0 million, representing 39.5% of the $1,239.0 million of the then outstanding Term Loans under the Senior Secured Credit Facility. These agreements all were settled in January 2013, and no interest rate caps were outstanding as of December 31, 2013.

Our interest rate risk management strategy is to use derivative instruments to minimize significant unanticipated earnings fluctuations that may arise from volatility in interest rates of our borrowings and to manage the interest rate sensitivity of our debt. At December 31, 2012, the non-current asset associated with interest rate agreements was recorded on the balance sheet in deferred charges and other assets at fair value. We do not account for the interest rate cap agreements as hedges. As such, changes in the fair value of derivative instruments are recognized in interest expense, net. At December 31, 2012, the interest rate caps had a fair value of approximately less than $0.1 million.

In January 2013, we amended our Senior Secured Credit Facility, wherein we decreased the borrowing rate of the Revolving Facility through a decrease in the applicable margin rate from 4.75% to 3.00% as applied to base rate loans (which shall bear interest at a rate per annum equal to the base rate plus the applicable margin (as defined therein)), or 5.75% to 4.00% as applied to LIBO rate loans (which shall bear interest at a rate per annum equal to the LIBO rate plus the applicable margin plus the mandatory cost (as defined therein), if applicable). The Senior Notes that we issued in January 2013 carry a fixed interest rate of 8.75%.

During 2013, we had borrowings under the Revolving Facility, on which we incurred interest charges subject to the rates discussed above. Based on the weighted-average outstanding borrowings under the Revolving Facility throughout the year ended December 31, 2013, an increase of 100 basis points in the LIBO rate would have resulted in approximately $0.2 million of additional interest expense for the period. As of December 31, 2013, we had no variable rate debt issued under our Senior Secured Credit Facility, including no amounts outstanding under the Revolving Facility.

 

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Our Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility is subject to interest charges against both the amount of outstanding borrowings as well as the amount of available, but undrawn commitments under the Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility. In regards to outstanding borrowings on the Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility, fixed interest charges are 2.6% plus variable commercial paper rates which vary by month and by currency as outstanding Account Receivable Securitization Facility balances can be denominated in euro and U.S. dollar. In regards to available, but undrawn commitments under the Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility, fixed interest charges are 1.4%. Based on the weighted-average outstanding borrowings under the Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility throughout the year ended December 31, 2013, an increase of 100 basis points in variable commercial paper rates would have resulted in approximately $0.9 million of additional interest expense for the period. As of December 31, 2013, there were no outstanding borrowings and there was $143.8 million of availability under the Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility.

Foreign Currency Risks

We are also exposed to market risk from changes in foreign currency exchange rates which could affect operating results as well as our financial position and cash flows. We manage our transaction risk where possible by paying expenses in the same currency in which we generate sales in a particular country. We may employ derivative contracts in the future which are not designated for hedge accounting treatment which may result in volatility to earnings depending upon fluctuations in the underlying markets. As of December 31, 2012, we had three open foreign exchange forward contracts to buy and sell euro currency with an aggregate net notional U.S. dollar equivalent of $82.0 million. These contracts were settled in February and May 2013. As of December 31, 2013, we had no open foreign exchange forward contracts.

Our foreign currency exposures include the euro, British pound, Chinese renminbi, Indian rupee, Korean won, Japanese yen, Brazilian real and Swedish krona. The primary foreign currency exposure relates to the U.S. dollar to euro exchange rate.

We have legal entities consolidated in our financial statements that have functional currencies other than U.S. dollar, our reporting currency. As a result of currencies fluctuating against the U.S. dollar, currency translation gains and losses are recorded in other comprehensive income primarily as a result of the remeasurement of our euro functional legal entities as of December 31, 2013 and December 31, 2012.

Commodity Price Risk

We purchase certain raw materials such as benzene, ethylene, butadiene, BPA and styrene under short- and long-term supply contracts. The purchase prices are generally determined based on prevailing market conditions. Changing raw material and energy prices have had material impacts on our earnings and cash flows in the past and will likely continue to have significant impacts on our earnings and cash flows in future periods.

We do not currently enter into derivative financial instruments for trading or speculative purposes to manage our commodity price risk relating to our raw material contracts. In the future, it is possible we will enter into derivative financial instruments to manage our commodity risk relating to our raw material contracts.

 

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Contractual Obligations and Commercial Commitments

The following table reflects our contractual obligations as of December 31, 2013. Amounts we pay in future periods may vary from those reflected in the table (in millions):

 

     Payments due by year  
Contractual Obligations at
December 31, 2013
   2014      2015      2016      2017      2018      Thereafter      Total  

Purchase commitments(1)

   $ 2,253.1       $ 1,914.0       $ 1,844.3       $ 1,805.7       $ 1,416.9       $ 2,618.1       $ 11,852.1   

Long-term Indebtedness(2)

     —           —           —           —           —           1,325.0         1,325.0   

Interest payments on long-term debt(3)

     115.9         115.9         115.9         115.9         115.9         58.0         637.5   

Pension and other postretirement benefits(4)

     16.0         0.6         0.8         1.2         1.2         9.7         29.5   

Minimum operating lease commitments and other obligations(5)

     9.0         7.6         6.3         4.4         4.1         16.9         48.3   

Fees related to Advisory Agreement(6)

     4.0         4.0         4.0         4.0         4.0         6.0         26.0   

Uncertain tax positions, including interest and penalties(7)

     —           —           —           —           —           18.0         18.0   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

 

Total

   $ 2,398.0       $ 2,042.1       $ 1,971.3       $ 1,931.2       $ 1,542.1       $ 4,051.7       $ 13,936.4   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

 

 

(1) We have certain raw material purchase contracts where we are required to purchase certain minimum volumes at the then prevailing market prices. These commitments range from 1 to 7 years. In certain raw material purchase contracts, we have the right to purchase less than required minimums and pay a liquidated damages fee, or, in case of a permanent plant shutdown, to terminate the contracts. In such cases these obligations would be less than the obligations shown in the table above.
(2) In January 2013, we issued $1,325.0 million aggregate principal of our 8.750% Senior Notes due 2019. The Senior Notes will mature and be due in full on February 1, 2019. The above excludes other debt outstanding as of December 31, 2013 totaling $11.4 million, which was primarily short-term in nature.
(3) Includes estimated interest on the 8.750% Senior Notes due 2019, which is payable semi-annually on February 1st and August 1st of each year, which commenced on August 1, 2013. Estimated annual payments on the Senior Notes are approximately $115.9 million. Estimated interest payments do not include the Revolving Facility or Accounts Receivable Securitization Facility as amounts outstanding under these facilities vary due to periodic borrowings and repayments. There are no amounts outstanding under either facility as of December 31, 2013.
(4) Includes minimum contributions required to be made to the funded pension plans and expected benefit payments to the employees for unfunded pension plans. With respect to our minimum funding requirements under our pension obligations, we may elect to make contributions in excess of the minimum funding requirements in response to investment performance or changes in interest rates or when we believe that it is financially advantageous to do so and based on our other cash requirements. Our minimum funding requirements after 2013 will depend on several factors, including investment performance and interest rates. Our minimum funding requirements may also be affected by changes in applicable legal requirements. We also have payments due with respect to our postretirement benefit obligation. We do not fund our postretirement benefit obligation. Rather, payments are made as costs are incurred by covered retirees. We expect benefit payments related to our postretirement benefit obligation to be $2.0 million through 2023.
(5) Excludes certain estimated future commitments under agreements with Dow, including a Second Amended And Restated Master Outsourcing Services Agreement (“SAR MOSA”) under which Dow provides administrative and operational services to us and 25-year site services agreements, as amended (“SSAs”) under which Dow provides utilities and site services to certain of our facilities co-located with Dow.

 

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We have the right to terminate the SAR MOSA after June 1, 2015, subject to certain termination penalties, upon the appropriate notice of termination. As of December 31, 2013, we estimate our minimum obligation under the SAR MOSA, excluding the impacts of inflation, to be approximately $47.0 million in 2014, $20.0 million through June 1, 2015 and $32.0 million thereafter. However, should we continue with this agreement after that date, we estimate our minimum cumulative obligation as of December 31, 2013 through the completion of the contract, excluding the impacts of inflation, would be approximately $328.9 million through December 31, 2020.

We may terminate a site service or services under any SSAs in the event of a closure of a consumption unit (production site or production unit). If a site service is terminated in the event of the closure of a consumption unit, we will pay certain capital charges for 60 months following the termination of such site service. Either party may terminate an SSA at any time (i) by agreement of the parties; (ii) for failure of a party to pay under the agreement; (iii) for a material breach which is not cured or (iv) in the event of insolvency. If an SSA expires or is terminated (other than for permanent cessation of operations) we must pay certain capital charges for 45 months following termination or expiration of the agreement. Utilizing current year known costs and assuming that we continue with these agreements, we estimate our contractual obligations for the SSAs to be approximately $259.5 million annually for 2014 through 2018. Should we choose to continue these agreements, we estimate our minimum cumulative obligation would be approximately $6,352.1 million through June 2038.

See “Business—Our Relationship with Dow” included elsewhere within this prospectus.

 

(6) Includes estimated future commitments under the Advisory Agreement with the Advisors under which the Advisors provide us with management and consulting services and financial and other advisory services. The Advisory Agreement has an initial 10-year initial term and thereafter is subject to automatic one-year extensions unless the Advisors provide written notice of termination. In addition, the Advisory Agreement will terminate automatically upon the completion of this offering or a change of control. See “Certain Relationships and Related Party Transactions.”
(7) Due to uncertainties in the timing of the effective settlement of tax positions with the respective taxing authorities, we are unable to determine the timing of payments related to its uncertain tax positions, including interest and penalties. Amounts are therefore reflected in “Thereafter”.

Critical Accounting Policies and Estimates

Our discussion and analysis of results of operations and financial condition are based upon our financial statements. These financial statements have been prepared in accordance with GAAP. The preparation of these financial statements requires us to make estimates and judgments that affect the amounts reported in the financial statements. We base our estimates and judgments on historical experiences and assumptions believed to be reasonable under the circumstances and re-evaluate them on an ongoing basis. Actual results could differ from our estimates under different assumptions or conditions. Our significant accounting policies, which may be affected by our estimates and assumptions, are more fully described in Note B to our consolidated financial statements in this prospectus. An accounting policy is deemed to be critical if it requires an accounting estimate to be made based on assumptions about matters that are highly uncertain at the time the estimate is made, and if different estimates that reasonably could have been used, or changes in the accounting estimates that are reasonably likely to occur periodically, could materially impact the financial statements. Management believes the following critical accounting policies reflect its most significant estimates and assumptions used in the preparation of the financial statements.

Pension Plans and Postretirement Benefits

We have various company-sponsored retirement plans covering substantially all employees. We also provide certain health care and life insurance benefits mainly to certain retirees in the United States. The plans provide health care benefits, including hospital, physicians’ services, drug and major medical expense coverage, and life insurance benefits. We recognize the underfunded or overfunded status of a defined benefit pension or

 

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postretirement plan as an asset or liability in our balance sheet and recognize changes in the funded status in the year in which the changes occur through accumulated other comprehensive income, which is a component of shareholder’s equity.

Pension benefits associated with these plans are generally based on each participant’s years of service, compensation, and age at retirement or termination. The discount rate is an important element of expense and liability measurement. We evaluate our assumptions at least once each year, or as facts and circumstances dictate, and make changes as conditions warrant.

We determine the discount rate used to measure plan liabilities as of the December 31 measurement date for the pension and postretirement benefit plans. The discount rate reflects the current rate at which the associated liabilities could be effectively settled at the end of the year. We set our rate to reflect the yield of a portfolio of high quality, fixed-income debt instruments that would produce cash flows sufficient in timing and amount to settle projected future benefits. Using this methodology, we determined a discount rate of 3.30% for pension and 4.72% for postretirement benefits to be appropriate as of December 31, 2013.

We determine the expected long-term rate of return on assets by performing a detailed analysis of historical and expected returns based on the underlying assets, which generally are insurance contracts. We also consider our historical experience with the pension fund asset performance. The expected return of each asset class is derived from a forecasted future return confirmed by current and historical experience. The weighted-average long-term rate of return assumption used for determining net periodic pension expense for 2013 was 2.44%, while the weighted-average long-term rate of return assumption used for determining net periodic pension expense for 2012 was 4.09%. The decrease was primarily due to certain assets moving to financial instruments with guaranteed returns. Future actual pension expense will depend on the performance of the underlying assets and changes in future discount rates, among other factors.

Holding all other factors constant, a 0.25 percentage point increase (decrease) in the discount rate used to determine net periodic cost would decrease (increase) 2013 pension expense by approximately $1.4 million and $(1.7) million, respectively. Holding all other factors constant, a 0.25 percentage point increase (decrease) in the long-term rate of return on assets used to determine net periodic cost would decrease (increase) 2013 pension expense by approximately $0.2 million and $(0.2) million, respectively.

Stock-Based Compensation

Since June 17, 2010, our Parent granted various time-based and performance-based restricted stock awards, or incentive shares, to certain officers and key members of management. Compensation expense related to time-based restricted stock awards is equivalent to the grant-date fair value of our Parent’s ordinary shares adjusted for the return of co-investment share and other equity investment amounts, as discussed below, and is being recognized as compensation expense over the service period utilizing graded vesting. At the grant date, we estimated a forfeiture rate of zero based on the limited number of officers and management receiving grants. During the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, respectively, 5,996 and 6,778 shares of time-based restricted stock awards were forfeited due to termination of certain employees. As a result, we recorded reductions of $0.8 million and $1.0 million to compensation expense for the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, respectively. At this time, we do not expect any significant forfeitures in the foreseeable future or the remaining service period of the related grants.

In addition, our Parent has a call right that gives it the option, but not the obligation, to repurchase vested stock at the then current fair value upon an employee’s termination, or at cost in certain circumstances. In 2013, as the result of certain employee terminations, the Parent repurchased a total of 3,372 previously vested time-based restricted stock awards at cost, resulting in a $0.9 million favorable adjustment to stock-based compensation expense.

The fair values of performance-based restricted stock awards were determined using a combination of a call option and digital option model that incorporated the fair value of our Parent’s ordinary shares, the return on

 

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investment targets that must be met, and assumptions about volatility, time until a performance condition will be met, risk-free interest rates and dividend yield. At this time, we do not consider the likelihood of meeting the performance obligations probable and have, therefore, recorded no compensation cost related to these awards. During the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, respectively, 9,368 and 10,651 shares of performance-based restricted stock awards were forfeited due to termination of certain employees.

During the year ended December 31, 2011, certain co-investment shares were issued for a subscription price of $397.2 per share, while during the year ended December 31, 2012, there were no co-investment shares issued. During the year ended December 31, 2013, a total of 779 co-investment shares were issued for a subscription price of $0.01 per share. We refer to these shares as “co-invest shares.” Our incentive shares are issued for a subscription price of $0.01 per share.

Our Parent is a private company with no active public market for its ordinary shares. For grants made on June 17, 2010 and through the third quarter of 2010, the awards were valued using a share price derived from the purchase price of the acquired assets and liabilities on that date. For grants awarded in the fourth quarter of 2010 and through 2013, our Parent determined the estimated per share fair value of its ordinary shares using a contemporaneous valuation consistent with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants 2013 Guide, “Valuation of Privately-Held Company Equity Securities Issued as Compensation” (the “Guide”). In conducting this valuation, our Parent considered all objective and subjective factors that it believed to be relevant, including its best estimate of its business condition, prospects, and operating performance. Within this contemporaneous valuation, a range of factors, assumptions, and methodologies were used. The significant factors included:

 

    the fact that we and our Parent were private companies with illiquid securities;

 

    our historical operating results;

 

    our discounted future cash flows, based on our projected operating results;

 

    valuations of comparable public companies; and

 

    the risk involved in the investment, as related to earnings stability, capital structure, competition and market potential.

For the contemporaneous valuation of our Parent’s ordinary shares, management estimated, as of the grant date, our enterprise value on a continuing operations basis, using the income and market approaches, as described in the Guide. The income approach utilized the discounted cash flow (“DCF”) methodology based on our financial forecasts and projections, as detailed below. The market approach utilized the Guideline Public Company and Guideline Transactions methods, as detailed below.

For the DCF methodology, we prepared annual projections of future cash flows through 2018. Beyond 2018, projected cash flows through the terminal year were projected at long-term sustainable growth rates consistent with long-term inflationary and industry expectations. Our projections of future cash flows were based on our estimated net debt-free cash flows and were discounted to the valuation date using a weighted-average cost of capital estimated using market participant assumptions.

For the Guideline Public Company and Guideline Transactions methods, we identified a group of comparable public companies and recent transactions within the chemicals industry. For the comparable companies, we estimated market multiples based on trading prices and trailing 12 months EBITDA and projected future EBITDA. We then calculated a rolling two year average of these multiples, which were applied to our trailing 12 months and projected EBITDA. When selecting comparable companies, consideration was given to industry similarity, their specific products offered, financial data availability and capital structure.

For the comparable transactions, we estimated market multiples based on prices paid for the related transactions and trailing 12 months EBITDA. These multiples were then applied to our trailing 12 months EBITDA. The results of the market approaches corroborated the fair value determined using the income approach.

 

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Asset Impairments

As of December 31, 2013, net property, plant and equipment totaled $606.4 million, net identifiable finite-lived intangible assets totaled $171.5 million and goodwill totaled $37.3 million. Management makes estimates and assumptions in preparing the financial statements for which actual results will emerge over long periods of time. This includes the recoverability of long-lived assets employed in the business. These estimates and assumptions are closely monitored by management and periodically adjusted as circumstances warrant. For instance, expected asset lives may be shortened or impairment recorded based on a change in the expected use of the asset or performance of the related asset group.

We evaluate long-lived assets and finite-lived identifiable intangible assets for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount of an asset or asset groupings may not be recoverable. When undiscounted future cash flows are not expected to be sufficient to recover an asset’s carrying amount, the asset is written down to its fair value based on a discounted cash flow analysis utilizing market participant assumptions.

During the three months ended December 31, 2013, we determined that the long-lived assets at our polycarbonate manufacturing facility in Stade, Germany should be assessed for impairment driven primarily by continued losses experienced in our polycarbonate business. This assessment indicated that the carrying amount of the long-lived assets at this facility were not recoverable when compared to the expected undiscounted cash flows of our polycarbonate business. Based upon our assessment of fair value of this asset group, we concluded these assets were fully impaired as of December 31, 2013. The fair value of the asset group was determined under the income approach utilizing a discounted cash flow (“DCF”) model. The key assumptions used in the DCF model included growth rates and cash flow projections, discount rate, tax rate and an estimated terminal value.

As a result, in the year ended December 31, 2013, we recorded an impairment loss of approximately $9.2 million. The amount was recorded within “Selling, general and administrative expenses” in the consolidated statement of operations and allocated entirely to the Engineered Polymers segment.

Aside from the discussion above, we have continued to assess the recoverability of certain of our assets, and concluded there are no events or circumstances identified by management that would indicate these assets are not recoverable. However, the current environment is subject to changing market conditions and requires significant management judgment to identify the potential impact to our assessment. If we are not able to achieve certain actions or our future operating results do not meet our expectations, it is possible that impairment charges may need to be recorded on one or more of our operating facilities.

Long-lived assets to be disposed of by sale are classified as held for sale and are reported at the lower of carrying amount or fair value less cost to sell, and depreciation is ceased. Long-lived assets to be disposed of other than by sale are classified as held and used until they are disposed.

Our goodwill impairment testing is performed annually as of October 1st. We will perform more frequent impairment tests should events or changes in circumstances indicate that the fair value of a reporting unit has more likely than not declined below its carrying value. Impairment testing for goodwill is done at a reporting unit level.

We determined that as of our annual assessment date of October 1, 2013, each of our reporting units had fair values that substantially exceeded the carrying values indicating that none of our goodwill is impaired.

An impairment loss generally would be recognized when the carrying amount of the reporting unit’s net assets exceeds the estimated fair value of the reporting unit. The estimated fair value of a reporting unit is determined using a discounted cash flow analysis. At December 31, 2013, our $37.3 million in total goodwill is allocated as follows to our reportable segments: $14.9 million to Latex, $10.2 million to Synthetic Rubber, $8.7 million to Styrenics and $3.5 million to Engineered Polymers.

 

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Factors which could result in future impairment charges, among others, include changes in worldwide economic conditions, changes in technology, changes in competitive conditions and customer preferences, and fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates. For a discussion of these risk factors see “Risk Factors”.

Income Taxes

We account for income taxes using the asset and liability method. Under this method, deferred tax assets and liabilities are recognized for the future tax consequences of temporary differences between the carrying amounts and tax bases of assets and liabilities using enacted rates. The effect of a change in tax rates on deferred taxes is recognized in income in the period that includes the enactment date. Deferred taxes are provided on the outside basis differences and unremitted earnings of subsidiaries outside of Luxembourg. All undistributed earnings of foreign subsidiaries and affiliates are expected to be repatriated at December 31, 2013. Based on the evaluation of available evidence, both positive and negative, we recognize future tax benefits, such as net operating loss carryforwards and tax credit carryforwards, to the extent that realizing these benefits is considered to be more likely than not.

At December 31, 2013, we had a net deferred tax asset balance of $77.7 million, after valuation allowances of $50.4 million. In evaluating the ability to realize the deferred tax assets, we rely on, in order of increasing subjectivity, taxable income in prior carryback years, the future reversals of existing taxable temporary differences, tax planning strategies and forecasted taxable income using historical and projected future operating results. At December 31, 2013, we had deferred tax assets for tax loss carryforward of approximately $39.3 million, $0.9 million of which is subject to expiration in the years between 2014 and 2018. We continue to evaluate our historical and projected operating results for several legal entities for which we maintain valuation allowances on net deferred tax assets.

We are subject to income taxes in Luxembourg, the United States and numerous foreign jurisdictions, and are subject to audit within these jurisdictions. Therefore, in the ordinary course of business there is inherent uncertainty in quantifying our income tax positions. The tax provision includes amounts considered sufficient to pay assessments that may result from examinations of prior year tax returns; however, the amount ultimately paid upon resolution of issues raised may differ from the amounts accrued. Since significant judgment is required to assess the future tax consequences of events that have been recognized in our financial statements or tax returns, the ultimate resolution of these events could result in adjustments to our financial statements and such adjustments could be material. Therefore, we consider such estimates to be critical in preparation of our financial statements.

The financial statement effect of an uncertain income tax position is recognized when it is more likely than not, based on the technical merits, that the position will be sustained upon examination. Accruals are recorded for other tax contingencies when it is probable that a liability to a taxing authority has been incurred and the amount of the contingency can be reasonably estimated. Uncertain income tax positions have been recorded in “Other noncurrent obligations” in the consolidated balance sheets for the periods presented.

Management judgment is required in determining our provision for income taxes, our deferred tax assets and liabilities, and any valuation allowance recorded against our deferred tax assets. The valuation allowance is based on our estimates of future taxable income and the period over which we expect the deferred tax assets to be recovered. Our assessment of future taxable income is based on historical experience and current and anticipated market and economic conditions and trends. In the event that actual results differ from these estimates or we adjust our estimates in the future, we may need to adjust our valuation allowance, which could materially impact our financial position and results of operations.

Off-balance Sheet Arrangements

We do not have any off-balance sheet arrangements.

Recent Accounting Pronouncements

We describe the impact of recent accounting pronouncements in Note B to the consolidated financial statements, included elsewhere within this prospectus.

 

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BUSINESS

We are a leading global materials company engaged in the manufacture and marketing of emulsion polymers and plastics, including various specialty and technologically differentiated products. We have leading market positions in many of the markets in which we compete. We believe we have developed these strong market positions due to our technological differentiation, diverse global manufacturing base, long-standing customer relationships, commitment to sustainable solutions and competitive cost positions. We believe that growth in overall consumer spending and construction activity, increased demand in the automotive industry for higher fuel efficiency and lighter-weight materials, and improving living standards in emerging markets will result in growth in the global markets in which we compete. In addition, we believe our increasing business presence in developing regions such as China, Southeast Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe further enhances our prospects.

We develop emulsion polymers and plastics products that are incorporated into a wide range of our customers’ products throughout the world, including tires and other products for automotive applications, carpet and artificial turf backing, coated paper and packaging board, food service packaging, appliances, medical devices, consumer electronics and construction applications, among others. We seek to regularly develop new and improved products and processes, supported by our strong patent portfolio, designed to enhance our customers’ product offerings. We have long-standing relationships with a diverse base of global customers, many of whom are leaders in their markets and rely on us for formulation, technological differentiation, and compounding expertise to find sustainable solutions for their businesses. Many of our products represent only a small portion of a finished product’s production costs, but provide critical functionality to the finished product and are often specifically developed to customer specifications. We believe these product traits result in substantial customer loyalty for our products.

We operate our business in four reporting segments: Latex, Synthetic Rubber, Styrenics and Engineered Polymers. Our major products include: styrene-butadiene latex, or SB latex, and styrene-acrylate latex, or SA latex, in our Latex segment; solution styrene butadiene rubber, or SSBR, lithium polybutadiene rubber, or Li-PBR, emulsion styrene butadiene rubber, or ESBR, and nickel polybutadiene rubber, or Ni-PBR, in our Synthetic Rubber segment; polystyrene, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, or ABS, and styrene acrylonitrile, or SAN, in our Styrenics segment; and polycarbonate, or PC, compounds and blends, and polypropylene compounds in our Engineered Polymers segment.

We have significant manufacturing and production operations around the world, which allows us to serve our global customer base. As of December 31, 2013, our production facilities included 35 manufacturing plants (which included a total of 83 production units) at 27 sites across 14 countries, including joint ventures and contract manufacturers. Our manufacturing locations include sites in high-growth emerging markets such as China, Indonesia and Brazil. Additionally, as of December 31, 2013 we operated 11 research and development (“R&D”) facilities globally, including mini plants, development centers and pilot coaters, which we believe are critical to our global presence and innovation capabilities.

 

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We are a global business with a diverse geographic revenue mix and significant operations around the world.

 

LOGO   LOGO

In 2013, we generated net sales of $5,307.4 million, adjusted EBITDA of $303.3 million, and a net loss of $22.2 million. Additional information regarding adjusted EBITDA, including a reconciliation of net income (loss) to adjusted EBITDA, is included in “Prospectus Summary—Summary Consolidated Financial and Other Data.”

Our Competitive Strengths

Leading Positions in Consolidating Markets

We have leading positions in several of the markets in which we compete, including the #1 position in SSBR in Europe and the #1 position in SB latex globally, and we are a leading global producer of plastics products, including polystyrene and PC. We attribute our strong market positions to our technologically differentiated products, the scale of our global manufacturing base, our long-standing customer relationships and our competitive cost positions.

The markets in which we compete are also highly consolidated and have continued to experience further consolidation over the last several years through the business combinations of BASF Group and Ciba Specialty Chemicals, Yule Catto & Co. plc and PolymerLatex GmbH (currently known as Synthomer plc), Omnova Solutions Inc. and Eliokem International SAS and the formation of Styrolution Group GmbH. As a result, from 2005 to 2011, over 400 kMT of production capacity was eliminated in the SB latex markets in North America and Europe, which represented approximately a 20% reduction in production capacity since 2005. In 1990, the top three producers, measured by production capacity, in North America and Europe represented 68% and 49% of estimated regional capacity, respectively. As a result of the capacity rationalizations and consolidations, including those described above, the top three producers in each of North America and Europe represented over 80% of estimated regional production capacity in 2013.

Production capacity has also been reduced in several core markets including Styrenics. For example, from 2006 to 2011, the polystyrene industry experienced substantial capacity rationalization with over 1,000 kMT of annual U.S. and Western Europe polystyrene capacity being eliminated during this time period, representing a reduction of approximately 20% of the 2005 total capacity in those regions.

Technological Advantage and Product Innovation

Most of our products are critical inputs that significantly impact the functionality, production costs and quality of our customers’ products. Many of our products are also differentiated by their performance, reliability,

 

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customization and value, which are critical factors in our customers’ selection and retention of materials suppliers. For example, our advanced SSBR technology is designed to reduce a tire’s rolling resistance, resulting in better mileage and fuel efficiency and lower carbon dioxide emissions while at the same time improving the tire’s wet-grip, a measure of braking effectiveness and traction. We believe these are key performance attributes sought by the end user and have become more easily identifiable through the growing adoption of tire labeling requirements by regulatory agencies, including formal adoption by the European Union in late 2012. These attributes also help in meeting European carbon dioxide emissions legislation requirements. Other jurisdictions have adopted or are considering similar legislation, including tire labeling requirements.

Our lightweight plastics materials also allow automotive companies to reduce weight in vehicles by substituting heavier structural parts with our products and thereby improving fuel efficiency for cars. Higher end automotive interior applications have also benefitted from utilizing our technology which has high aesthetic appeal and excellent scratch resistant characteristics. Energy use is also substantially reduced by using our plastic in lighting and other consumer applications.

Through our performance latex portfolio, we offer a variety of products designed to meet the needs of multiple applications, including adhesives, building and construction and composites, road, athletic, and automotive surfaces, technical fabrics and technical papers and boards. Our performance latex products are designed to enhance and improve an application’s mechanical properties, including water, chemical, stain, abrasion or oil resistance, cohesive and adhesive strength, or dimensional stability, flexibility, water impermeability and efflorescence resistance. Using our technological expertise, we typically launch one to two new technologies in our latex segment each year.

The technology supporting our product innovation includes more than 250 patents and 200 pending patent applications that we own world-wide covering processes and technologies such as material formulations, material process technologies and various end-use industrial applications for our materials.

Diverse Global Reach with Strong Presence in Emerging Markets

As of December 31, 2013, our production facilities included 35 manufacturing plants (which included a total of 83 production units) at 27 sites in 14 countries, inclusive of joint ventures and contract manufacturers. We believe our diverse locations provide us with a competitive advantage in meeting and anticipating the needs of our global and local customers in both well-established and growing markets. We have a strong presence in Asia and Latin America, where we supply custom formulated latex products both for established and new paper mills, as well as a variety of engineered polymers, synthetic rubber and other products that are used in a variety of end-markets.

Long-Standing, Collaborative Customer Relationships

We and the Styron business have long-standing relationships with many of our customers, helping them to develop and commercialize multiple generations of their products. We believe we have developed strong relationships through our highly collaborative process, whereby we work with our customers, particularly in high-value segments such as SSBR, specialized plastics and performance latex, to develop products that meet their specific needs. As part of this process, we test our products at customer sites and work with customers to optimize and customize our product offerings. As a result of our close collaboration, we have historically achieved a high success rate of retaining customers. As of December 31, 2013, we served approximately 1,300 customers in over 75 countries with no single customer accounting for more than 7.0% of our net sales in 2013.

Attractive Segments and End-Markets Experiencing Cyclical Recovery

Our strategy is to focus on what we believe are the most attractive segments for our customers’ products, or end-markets, where demand is underpinned by global trends supporting long-term volume growth, improving living standards in emerging markets, fuel efficiency and the increasing use of light-weight materials. We serve

 

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customers in a diversified mix of end-markets that we believe generally grow when global gross domestic product, or GDP, increases and we believe that the core end-markets that we serve, including automotive, construction, household and appliance will grow at rates exceeding the rate of global GDP growth. For example, we serve the global automotive market, which is projected to grow by more than 5% per year through 2018. The global household appliances market is also expected to grow by more than 5% per year through 2017 and the global construction market is expected to grow by more than 5% per year through 2018. In addition, certain key regional markets where we have a strong presence, such as China coated paper and board, are expected to outperform global growth rates.

Over half of our net sales in 2013 were to customers serving European end-markets, and we expect the continued cyclical recovery in Europe to result in increased demand for many of our products while also increasing utilization rates at our facilities from the depressed levels that we have experienced over the last few years. For example, we expect our Synthetic Rubber segment to benefit from the anticipated recovery in the European tire market, which in 2013 recorded its lowest level of sales since 2009. We also expect the cyclical recovery in North America and Europe to improve demand prospects for paper and carpet, which are key end-markets for our SB latex products.

We also believe that the relatively modest level of capacity additions that have been announced in the marketplace will contribute to increased demand for our production capacity and products.

Cost Competitive Assets and Raw Material Sourcing

We believe that our asset and raw material utilization provides us with a competitive cost position for our products. Our products are produced on a global scale with well maintained, productive and cost efficient assets, at facilities which are positioned globally near some of our key customers or markets, or near major integrated petrochemical centers or are co-located at large Dow facilities, where we benefit from receiving certain raw materials supplied to our facilities by pipeline. We also benefit from existing long-term supply contracts for raw materials including ethylene, butadiene, and benzene, which are important in securing our supply of raw materials in markets where availability may fluctuate with demand.

The presence of some of our facilities on Dow manufacturing sites allows us to benefit from Dow’s existing manufacturing infrastructure in an efficient manner, without the need for us to construct our own infrastructure or provide our own related site services. Dow pipelines directly supply raw materials to our facilities in Terneuzen, The Netherlands and in Boehlen, Schkopau, and Stade, Germany. We share manufacturing infrastructure with Dow at these locations as well as in Midland, Michigan. At certain of our other facilities, we are able to limit the amount of our outbound freight costs as a result of the proximity of several of our facilities, including Tsing Yi, Hong Kong, Dalton, Georgia and Hamina, Finland, to key local customers.

We also seek to leverage our experience with our key raw materials, styrene monomer, to achieve economies of scale. We purchase styrene pursuant to cost-based contracts. We also produce styrene in Terneuzen, The Netherlands and Boehlen, Germany using assets that have operated in 2013 in the 1st or 2nd quartile for energy and raw material efficiency as compared to other European ethylbenzene styrene monomer producers.

Experienced Management Team

Our executive leadership team averages over 25 years of industry experience, including leadership positions within our business units, and significant public company leadership experience at other chemical companies.

Our Growth Strategy

We believe that there are significant opportunities to grow our business globally and enhance our position as a leading global materials company engaged in the manufacture and marketing of standard, specialty and technologically differentiated emulsion polymers and plastics by executing on the following strategies:

 

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Continue Product Innovation and Technological Differentiation

We intend to continue to address our customers’ critical materials needs by utilizing our technological expertise and development capabilities to create specialty grades, new and sustainable products and technologically differentiated formulations. We believe our technological differentiation positions us to participate in attractive, high growth areas of the markets in which we compete. One such area where we believe we have a technological advantage is enhanced SSBR, which is expected to grow at 9% annually through 2020. Enhanced SSBR technology, which includes later generations of SSBR and functionalized SSBR, is used in the latest generation of performance tires. The global market for enhanced SSBR is expected to constitute approximately 40% of the total SSBR market by 2017. We continue to devote significant R&D resources to improving and furthering our SSBR technology and our polybutadiene rubber technologies (such as neodymium butadiene rubber and lithium butadiene rubber) in order to remain a leader in these markets. Our development efforts are currently focused in large part on continuing to improve the fuel efficiency and performance characteristics of automotive tires.

We are also working with our industry partners, particularly in the automotive, medical devices and consumer electronics sectors, to develop new advanced plastics with the goal of gaining market share in higher value-added areas of the markets served by our Engineered Polymers business.

As a global leader in SB latex, we also continue to evaluate opportunities to expand our performance latex business by targeting particular end-markets and chemistries where we believe we have a competitive advantage, such as SB performance latex and styrene acrylics. We believe that performance latex accounts for a substantial portion of the total synthetic latex market, but only accounted for 10% of our Latex segment’s net sales in 2013, and we believe that we are well positioned to capture a larger share of this performance latex market.

Strategically Invest in Attractive Segments of the Market

We plan to make strategic capital investments to extend our leadership in select market segments and meet expected growing demand for our products. Our new SSBR production line in Schkopau, Germany began production on October 1, 2012, adding 50 kMT of new capacity. In addition, we entered into an agreement in February 2014 to repurchase 25 kMT of SSBR production capacity rights at our Schkopau facility from JSR Corporation Tokyo, Wallisellen Branch, effective April 1, 2014, at a significant discount to the estimated cost to build equivalent new capacity. With these two capacity additions, we have approximately doubled our SSBR production capacity.

Expand and Deepen Our Presence in Emerging Markets

We expect to capitalize on growing demand for our products in emerging markets such as China, Southeast Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe and increase our local market share by expanding our customer base and local capabilities in these geographies. We believe that improving living standards and growth in GDP across emerging markets are creating increased demand for our products. We are also adding an additional 25 kMT of SB latex capacity at our facility in Zhangjiagang, China, which we expect to become operational in the second quarter of 2015. We expect to leverage our existing technology and platforms to make additional investments in emerging markets to address expected increases in demand for our SSBR, performance latex and plastics products in those geographies. We also expect this growth to occur in the end markets that use our products. For example, light-weight vehicle auto production is expected to grow from 2013 through 2018 at an annual rate of approximately 9% in China, approximately 6% in Asia and approximately 5% in South America. In addition, output for coated paper and paperboard in China has grown in recent years with related increases in the demand for paper coating chemicals. Consumption of SB latex for paper coatings in China is expected to grow by approximately 7% per year through 2016 and consumption of SB latex in China for use in carpet backing is expected to grow by approximately 6% per year through 2016.

We expect to capitalize on growing demand for our products in emerging markets and increase our local market share by expanding our customer base and local capabilities in these geographies. For example, we recently announced

 

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a 25 kMT expansion of our SB latex capacity at our facility in Zhangjiagang, China, which we expect to become operational in the second quarter of 2015 and will represent a 33% increase in our SB latex capacity in China.

We also expect to leverage our existing technology and platforms to make additional investments in emerging markets to address expected increases in demand for our SSBR, performance latex and plastics products in those geographies.

Opportunistically Pursue Strategic Acquisitions to Extend Leadership Positions

We intend to pursue acquisitions and joint ventures that have attractive risk-adjusted returns to extend our leadership positions in what we believe are the more attractive market segments (such as synthetic rubber and performance latex) and geographies for us, including emerging markets. We believe that a long-term trend toward consolidation in our industry will continue, which we expect to create opportunities for us given our scale, broad customer base, and geographic reach.

Continue to Implement Cost Saving Measures and Focus on Cash Flow Generation

We have a proven track record of offsetting fixed cost inflation with cost saving actions, and we continue to seek to identify incremental cost saving opportunities. In recent years, we have launched several company-wide initiatives intended to further reduce our costs and increase our competitiveness. We have reduced our fixed cost base by approximately $70 million since 2011 through a number of cost-saving initiatives such as streamlining production and administrative processes and optimizing logistics. We believe that our current cost structure positions us favorably to compete and grow in the current market environment, and we have ongoing corporate cost saving initiatives intended to realize annual cost savings at or above the rate of fixed cost inflation.

In addition, we continue to focus on cash flow generation through disciplined working capital and capital expenditure management. Following the completion of the SSBR capacity expansion at our Schkopau, Germany facility in 2012, capital expenditures have been reduced from approximately $112 million in 2012 to approximately $55 million in 2013, net of a $6 million and a $19 million government subsidy for SSBR expansion, respectively. We believe that our maintenance capital expenditures on our current fixed asset base will be in the range of $30 million to $40 million per year over the next several years, which represents less than 1% of our net sales.

 

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Business Model

The chart below illustrates our primary business operations in each of our business units, from the raw materials used in our products to our end-markets.

 

LOGO

Segment Overview

We operate in four reporting segments under two business units. Our Emulsion Polymers business unit includes our Latex reporting segment and our Synthetic Rubber reporting segment. Our Plastics business unit includes our Styrenics reporting segment and our Engineered Polymers reporting segment. The table below includes our net sales, EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA and operating income (loss) in each of our reporting segments for the year ended December 31, 2013.

 

     Latex      Synthetic
Rubber
     Styrenics      Engineered
Polymers
    Corporate
Unallocated
    Total  
     (in millions)  

Net sales

   $ 1,341.4       $ 622.1       $ 2,305.4       $ 1,038.5        —        $ 5,307.4   

Adjusted EBITDA

     106.2         113.5         148.0         1.9        (66.3     303.3   

EBITDA

     95.4         113.5         160.7         (9.1     (133.7     226.8   

Operating income (loss)

     67.7         84.4         135.7         (16.9     (90.7     180.2   

See Note S to our consolidated financial statements included in this prospectus for detailed financial information on our business by segment and by geography.

Latex Segment

Overview

We are a global leader in SB latex, holding a strong market position across the geographies and applications in which we compete, including the #1 position in SB latex in Europe and the #2 position in North America. We produce SB latex primarily for coated paper used in advertising and magazines, packaging board coatings, carpet and artificial turf backings, as well as a number of performance latex applications. In 2013, approximately half of our Latex segment’s net sales were generated in Europe, approximately 25% were generated in the United States and the remainder was generated in Asia and other geographies.

 

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We believe that our leading scale and differentiated capabilities in this segment are a competitive advantage that allows us to invest in new formulation capabilities and polymer science. Using our two pilot coating facilities in the United States and Switzerland, we work alongside our customers to develop new products and customer branding. We believe that this capability allows us to capture new business, strengthen our existing customer relationships and broaden our technological expertise.

We believe our development and formulation capabilities contribute to our strong position. Further, we believe our growth prospects in latex are enhanced by our expanding capacity in China. We believe that emerging markets, and in particular China, will contribute a substantial portion of the global growth of the paper and packaging board market segment over the next decade. We believe our growth prospects could also be enhanced if the recent trend of industry capacity reduction and consolidation continues. This consolidation trend includes the business combinations of BASF Group and Ciba Specialty Chemicals, Omnova Solutions Inc. and Eliokem International SAS, and Yule Catto & Co plc and PolymerLatex GmbH (currently known as Synthomer plc). We also believe we are well positioned to capture additional share in the performance latex market, which has accounted for a substantial portion of the total synthetic latex market, but only accounted for 10% of our Latex segment’s net sales in 2013.

Products and End Uses

We are a global leader in the production and marketing of SB latex for coated paper with the #1 position in SB latex in Europe and the #2 position in North America. For coated paper, we primarily manufacture SB latex, a high-volume product that is widely used as a binder for mineral pigments as it allows high coating speeds, improved smoothness, higher gloss level, opacity and water resistance. Typically, SB latex formulations are engineered in close collaboration with customers, and are tailored specifically to optimize finished product properties and production efficiency, and to minimize mill down time. Since SB latex accounts for, on average, approximately 8% of the total production cost for coated paper but is a critical element of the manufacturing process and provides performance characteristics key to the product’s end-use, we believe customers view it as a crucial component of their manufacturing process and typically seek high-quality, reliable producers.

We are also a leading supplier of latex polymers to the carpet and artificial turf industries and offer a diverse range of products for use in residential and commercial broadloom, needlefelt, and woven carpet backings. We produce high solids SB latex, SA latex, vinylidene chloride, and butadiene-methacrylate latex products for the commercial and niche carpet markets. We incorporate vinyl acrylic latex in our formulations for its ignition resistant properties, with the sourcing of vinyl acrylic latex readily available from a number of industry suppliers. SB latex is also used in flooring as an adhesive for carpet and artificial turf fibers.

We also offer a broad range of performance latex products, including SB latex, SA latex, and vinylidene chloride latex primarily for the adhesive, building and construction as well as the technical textile paper market, and have begun to implement the use of starch and associated new chemistries in paper coatings and carpet backing.

Customers

We believe our Latex segment is able to differentiate itself by offering customers value-added formulation and product development expertise. Our R&D team and Technical Services and Development, which we refer to as TS&D, team are able to use our two pilot coating facilities in Switzerland and the United States, four paper fabrication and testing labs in Brazil, China, Switzerland and the United States, three carpet technology centers located near carpet producers in China, the United States and Switzerland, and two product development and process research centers, one each in Germany and the United States, to assist customers in designing new products and enhancing the manufacturing process. Additionally, our global manufacturing capabilities are key in serving customers cost-effectively, as latex is costly to ship over long distances due to its high water content. We believe that our global network of service and manufacturing facilities is highly valued by our customers.

Many of our major customers rely on our dedicated R&D and TS&D teams to complement their limited in-house resources for formulation and reformulation tests and trials. We seek to capture the value of these services

 

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through our pricing strategy. In addition, as paper mills become larger and increasingly sophisticated with higher fixed costs, we believe there is greater demand for custom-formulated latexes. Historically, we have focused on capturing a majority share of new SB latex formulations for startups and major overhauls of existing paper coaters. In carpet applications, our product development expertise also allows us to provide differentiated products to our customers.

Competition

Our principal competitors in our Latex segment include BASF Group, Omnova Solutions Inc., Synthomer plc and Lin Cham Ltd. In our Latex segment, we compete primarily based on our ability to offer differentiated products, the reliability of our products, the quality of our customer service and the length and depth of our relationships.

Industry Outlook

Certain changes in industry structure have had a beneficial effect for latex producers, driven by industry capacity reduction and consolidation. From 2006 to 2011 industry capacity in North America and Europe contracted by approximately 20% due to shut downs and consolidations. Key industry events include the business combinations of BASF Group and Ciba Specialty Chemicals and resulting significant capacity reduction, a capacity rationalization by Dow / Dow Reichhold, Omnova Solutions Inc.’s rationalization at its Mogadore facility, the exit of The Lubrizol Corporation from the latex business, Omnova Solutions Inc.’s acquisition of Eliokem International SAS, and Yule Catto & Co. plc’s acquisition of PolymerLatex GmbH (currently known as Synthomer plc).

We also expect recent declines in the demand for coated paper to slow in the developed markets, particularly in Europe, and such declines to be more than offset by growth in emerging markets such as China as improving living standards generate increased demand for coated paper end products. Chinese consumption of styrene-butadiene latexes is expected to grow over 6% annually through 2016.

In addition, several historical developments that appeared to have an unfavorable impact at first, including the emergence of substitutes for SB latex in carpet backing applications in North America, have had less of an impact than initially anticipated due to superior SB latex performance, as many customers that we believe have switched to substitute products have switched back to SB latex due to its superior quality. This trend has been bolstered by increased butadiene availability and decreased butadiene cost in recent years. We also anticipate the housing recovery in the U.S. market will benefit our SB latex business through increased demand for carpet backing applications. We believe that if the recent trends of industry capacity reduction and consolidation and increasing demand in emerging markets continue, this will lead to a favorable production environment.

Synthetic Rubber Segment

Overview

We are a significant producer of styrene-butadiene and polybutadiene-based rubber products and we have a leading European market position in SSBR. While 100% of our sales were generated in Europe in 2013, approximately 15% of these net sales were exported to Asia, 8% to Latin America and 5% to North America.

We have a broad synthetic rubber technology and product portfolio, focusing on specialty products, such as SSBR and Li-PBR, while also producing core products, such as ESBR and Ni-PBR. Our synthetic rubber products are extensively used in tires, with an estimated 86% of our net sales from this segment in 2013 attributable to the tire market. We estimate that three quarters of these sales relate to replacement tires. We have strong relationships with many of the top global tire manufacturers and believe we have remained a supplier of choice as a result of our broad rubber portfolio and ability to offer technologically differentiated product and product customization capabilities. Other applications for our synthetic rubber products include polymer modification and technical rubber goods.

 

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Our most advanced rubber technology, SSBR, is a critical material for tires with low rolling resistance, which increases fuel efficiency and improves wet-grip and also leads to better traction and safety characteristics. We believe our growth prospects are enhanced by increasing demand for high performance tires, which are now more commonly used by automakers as OEM specified tires in their vehicles as a result of regulatory reforms in the EU, Japan and Korea that are aimed at improving fuel efficiency and reducing carbon dioxide emissions. As a result of these and other factors, demand for SSBR is expected to grow substantially faster than global GDP over the next 5 years.

Products and End Uses

Our Synthetic Rubber segment produces synthetic rubber products used in high-performance tires, impact modifiers and technical rubber products, such as conveyor belts, hoses, seals and gaskets. We participate significantly in the European synthetic rubber industry, where tire producers focus on high-performance and ultra high-performance tires and rely heavily on rubber suppliers to provide their supply of rubber, in contrast to North America where tire manufacturers produce most of their required rubber.

SSBR. We sell SSBR products for high-performance and ultra high-performance tire applications. We produce both clear and oil extended SSBR through batch polymerization in our three SSBR production lines. We believe these processes provide leading and technologically differentiated solutions to tire manufacturers.

We believe we are well-positioned to capture additional market share in high-growth high-performance tire applications and have expanded capacity to meet this anticipated demand. Our new SSBR production line in Schkopau, Germany began production on October 1, 2012, and expanded our SSBR production capacity by 50 kMT. In addition, we entered into an agreement in February 2014 to repurchase 25 kMT of SSBR production capacity rights at our Schkopau facility from JSR Corporation Tokyo, Wallisellen Branch, effective April 1, 2014, at a significant discount to the estimated cost to build equivalent new capacity. With these two capacity additions, we have approximately doubled our SSBR production capacity.

Our synthetic rubber portfolio is anchored by our SSBR technology and further strengthened by our new functionalized SSBR (SSBR engineered to perform specific functions) product offering. Our new product platform is used in the manufacture of high-performance and ultra high-performance tires. We expect demand growth for European performance tires, which are designed to improve passenger safety, tire longevity and vehicle fuel efficiency, to accelerate due to European legislation that became effective late in 2012.

During the last five years, we have been working closely with major tire producers around the world to develop multiple new SSBR grades, addressing key marketplace needs for improved tire fuel economy, grip, and abrasion characteristics, which we believe will lead to significant demand growth for our rubber products in Europe and around the world. We expect our synthetic rubber product mix to shift to new more advanced SSBR grades (from a relatively small portion of total SSBR volume in 2010 to more than 25% in 2015) to meet the expected demand growth.

ESBR. Our ESBR products are used in standard tires, technical goods, and footwear. Our ESBR product portfolio offers tire producers a comprehensive suite of synthetic rubber capabilities. For example, ESBR provides enhanced wet grip to tire treads and strength to the inner liner of tires, allowing the tires to be more easily processed.

Li-PBR. Our Li-PBR is used primarily for our own internal polymer modification applications. Polymer modification is the use of synthetic rubber to improve the impact resistance quality of plastic products. In 2013, approximately 80% of our Li-PBR products were consumed within our Plastics business unit for high impact polystyrene, or HIPS, and ABS production. We make two grades of Li-PBR exclusively for our polymer modification uses. In addition to impact resistance, Li-PBR provides visual surface gloss.

 

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Ni-PBR. We are currently the only European producer of Ni-PBR, with 30 kMT of capacity. We sell Ni-PBR products for use in standard tires, performance tires, technical goods and footwear. We believe Ni-PBR is valued by the tire industry because of its ability to form compounds that are easier to process, its ability to add wear resistance to the wet grip capabilities of SSBR and ESBR and its flexibility in tire sidewalls.

Customers

We maintain deep and long-standing relationships with a large number of multinational customers, including many of the top global tire manufacturers, as well as fast growing Asian tire manufacturers. Our relationships with our top customers, including with our predecessor business operated by Dow prior to the Acquisition, exceed 10 years on average.

Tire producers are the primary customers for our Synthetic Rubber segment. We believe we have remained a supplier of choice given our broad rubber portfolio, including technologically differentiated grades, and our product customization capabilities. The majority of our Synthetic Rubber segment net sales are based on contracts that generally include terms for at least three different rubber product families in addition to raw material pass-through clauses. Our R&D and TS&D teams use our broad rubber portfolio to develop differentiated specialty products for customers. Once implemented with a customer, these newly-developed specialty products cannot be easily replaced with a competitor’s product. As a result, we believe customers are likely to buy from us throughout the life cycle of specific tire models to avoid high switching costs and prevent repetition of the expensive development process.

Competition

Our principal competitors in our Synthetic Rubber segment include Asahi Kasei Corporation, JSR Corporation, Lanxess AG, Zeon Corporation, Versalis S.p.A and Synthos S.A. In our Synthetic Rubber segment, we compete primarily based on our ability to offer differentiated products, the reliability of our products, the quality of our customer service and the length and depth of our relationships.

Industry Outlook

 

Total Projected SSBR Demand

 

Total Projected Enhanced SSBR Demand

LOGO   LOGO

Our Synthetic Rubber segment participates mainly in the European synthetic rubber industry, where tire producers rely on rubber suppliers, in contrast to North America where tire manufacturers produce most of their required rubber. Rubber suppliers typically manufacture more than one grade of rubber as customers typically require different grades of rubber from a single supplier. Performance tires represent an especially attractive market to rubber producers because they provide substantial value to end customers and the market for performance tires is

 

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expected to grow at twice the rate of the rest of the tire market. Tire manufacturers are expected to continually seek improvements in advanced rubber, which optimizes the combination of fuel economy and wet grip in order to meet EU regulations which set minimum requirements and are being phased in through 2020. Other jurisdictions have adopted or are considering similar legislation and are also beginning to adopt the tire labeling requirements that have become mandatory in Europe since late 2012. Enhanced SSBR, which includes later generations of SSBR and functionalized SSBR and is used in the new generation of performance tires, is expected to reach approximately 40% of the total SSBR market by 2017. We believe our leadership in the fast growing SSBR segment will position us to perform well relative to the broader industry and anticipate future strong demand from the broader adoption of legislation similar to the EU legislation and the relative performance advantages of our SSBR products. Combined with relatively modest incremental capacity announcements by our competitors, particularly in enhanced SSBR, we expect industry utilization rates to remain high and increase in the near-term.

Styrenics Segment

Overview

Our Styrenics segment includes polystyrene, ABS and SAN products, as well as our internal production and sourcing of styrene monomer, a raw material common in SB latex, synthetic rubber and styrenics products. We are a leading producer of polystyrene and mass ABS, or mABS, where we focus our efforts on differentiated applications such as the liners and encasements of appliances and consumer electronics including smartphones and tablets. Within these applications, we have worked collaboratively with customers to develop more advanced grades of plastics such as our HIPS and mABS products. For example, we work with appliance manufacturers around the world to develop improved environmental stress crack resistant products and with our construction sheet customers on smooth ABS. These products offer superior properties, such as rigidity, insulation and colorability, and, in some cases, an improved environmental footprint compared to general purpose polystyrene or emulsion ABS. Our Styrenics segment also serves the packaging and construction end-markets, where we have launched a new general purpose polystyrene product for improved performance in foam insulation applications.

We believe our growth prospects in our Styrenics segment are enhanced by periodic trends of industry capacity reduction and consolidation in Europe and North America, such as the completed formation of the Styrolution Group GmbH joint venture combining certain INEOS and BASF Group assets and the prior acquisition of INEOS Nova by INEOS, as well as INEOS’ most recent asset rationalizations in styrene monomer and polystyrene and Styrolution’s recent announcement to close a polystyrene plant in the United States. We also have a 50% interest in Americas Styrenics LLC, our joint venture with Chevron Phillips Chemical Company, which operates in the North American and Latin American markets and has benefitted from recent positive trends in those markets. We expect further consolidation in certain regions of Asia with numerous producers and low asset utilization, which we believe will create opportunities for us, given our scale and geographic reach. We believe our growth prospects are further enhanced by our established manufacturing footprint in the high economic growth regions of Asia and our focus on attractive end-markets where improving living standards drive demand for growing appliances and consumer electronics markets. In 2013, approximately 60% of sales from our Styrene segment were generated in Europe and an additional 33% of sales were generated in Asia.

Products and End Uses

Polystyrene. We are a leading producer of polystyrene and focus on sales to injection molding and thermoforming customers. Our product offerings include a variety of GPPS and HIPS, which is polystyrene that has been modified with polybutadiene rubber to increase its impact resistant properties. These products provide customers with performance and aesthetics at a low cost across applications, including appliances, packaging, including food packaging and food service disposables, consumer electronics and building and construction materials.

We believe our STYRON™ brand is one of the longest established brands in the industry and is widely recognized in the global marketplace. We believe our R&D efforts have resulted in valuable, differentiated

 

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solutions for our customers. For instance, during the early 2000s, we developed an innovative STYRON A-TECH™ family of resins that is an advanced polystyrene product allowing customers to balance key properties such as toughness, gloss, stiffness, flow and cost, and provide combinations of properties that were previously not available with standard HIPS. We believe that over the past decade, this product family has become the industry standard for this application.

Acrylonitrile-Butadiene-Styrene (ABS). We believe we are a leading producer of ABS in Europe and are one of the few producers with a presence in North America. We produce mABS, a variation of ABS that has lower conversion and capital costs compared to the more common emulsion ABS, or eABS, process, marketed under the MAGNUM™ brand. mABS has similar properties to eABS but has greater colorability, thermal stability and lower gloss. mABS products can be manufactured to stricter specifications because it is produced in a continuous process as opposed to the batch process used in eABS. mABS also has environmental benefits such as waste reduction and higher yields. In addition to our own mABS production capacity, we also license our proprietary mABS technology to other producers.

Primary end uses for our ABS products include automotive and construction sheet. In 2013, we maintained a significant share of ABS sales into these markets, which we believe is driven by the differentiating attributes of our mABS products, our reputation as a knowledgeable supplier, our broad product mix and our customer collaboration and design capabilities.

Automotive manufacturers have developed innovative solutions in order to meet increasing fuel standards, such as the lightweighting of vehicles. Consequentially, manufacturers have been replacing heavier materials with durable yet lighter materials, such as mABS and polypropylene compounds. We expect this trend to continue, and we believe that our technological capabilities in our Styrenics segment together with our compounding and blending expertise will help generate future growth opportunities.

Styrene-Acrylonitrile. SAN is composed of styrene and acrylonitrile, which together provide clarity, stiffness, enhanced ability to be processed, mechanical strength, barrier properties, chemical resistance and heat resistance.

SAN is used mainly in appliances, consumer goods and construction sheets, due to its low-cost, clarity and chemical resistance properties. Within our Styrenics segment, we manufacture SAN under the TYRIL™ brand name for use in housewares, appliances, automotive, construction sheets, battery cases and lighting applications. In addition, TYRIL™ is suitable for self-coloring which adds value in many of these uses.

Technology licensing. From time to time, we may seek to opportunistically license our technology to third parties pursuant to licensing arrangements that may be exclusive to a particular geography or product.

Customers

Our customer centric model focuses on understanding customers’ needs and developing tailored solutions that create value for both parties. For durable applications, we focus our TS&D, R&D and marketing teams on product design engineering initiatives for developing and specifying plastics in the next generation of construction applications, appliances, automotive, and consumer electronics. In non-durable applications, we focus on innovative products that provide clear cost advantages to our customers, serving customers with our cost-advantaged technology and operating excellence. We have leveraged industry-leading product development and technology capabilities to develop long-standing customer relationships with many of our customers, including a number who have purchased from us, including our predecessor business operated by Dow prior to the Acquisition, for more than 20 years. We believe that our global presence is an advantage, allowing us to provide customers with consistent product grades and positioning us to strategically serve growth economies.

 

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Competition

Our principal competitors in our Styrenics segment are Styrolution Group GmbH, Versalis S.p.A. and Total S.p.A. In our Styrenics segment, we compete primarily based on our ability to offer differentiated products, the reliability of our products, the quality of our customer service and the length and depth of our relationships.

Industry Outlook

From 2006 to 2011, the polystyrene industry experienced substantial capacity rationalizations by major producers such as BASF Group, INEOS Nova, and others. Over 1,000 kMT of annual U.S. and Western Europe polystyrene capacity were eliminated during this time period, representing a reduction of approximately 20% of the 2005 total capacity in those regions. Consistent with the broader industry, we participated in these rationalizations by electing to shut down some of our less cost effective European assets and concentrating production at our most competitive facilities. This trend has continued since 2011 with the completed formation of the Styrolution joint venture combining certain INEOS and BASF Group assets and the prior acquisition of INEOS Nova by INEOS, as well as INEOS’ most recent asset rationalizations in styrene monomer and polystyrene and Styrolution’s recent announcement to close a polystyrene plant in the United States.

In addition to improving profitability through cost rationalizations, the polystyrene industry has also benefited from a number of consolidating activities. A number of our larger competitors have enhanced their platforms via acquisitions and joint ventures, such as the completed formation of the Styrolution joint venture combining certain INEOS and BASF Group assets and the prior acquisition of INEOS Nova by INEOS. Utilization rates are expected to improve in Europe by 2018 and steadily increase in North America and Asia from 2014 through 2018 as the reduced production capacity serves growing demand in end-markets.

The ABS and styrenics markets have also experienced a number of capacity rationalizations since 2006. These rationalizations, combined with improved end-market demand, have resulted in a substantial improvement in operating rates since the beginning of the global economic downturn. Global styrene utilization rates of approximately 84% in 2013 are expected to increase to 91% by 2018.

Engineered Polymers Segment

Overview

We are a leading producer of engineered polymers. Our products are predominantly used in the automotive, consumer electronics, construction, and medical device markets. We are focused on differentiated products which we produce in our polymer and compounds and blends manufacturing facilities located across Europe, Asia, North America and Latin America. We believe that the strategic locations of these facilities combined with close customer collaboration offers us a strategic advantage in serving our customers. Many of our PC products and more than half of our compounds and blends products are differentiated, based on their physical properties, performance and aesthetic advantages. Our history of innovation has contributed to long-standing relationships with customers who are recognized leaders in their respective end-markets. We have established a strong market presence in the global automotive and electronics sector, targeting both component suppliers and final product manufacturers. Our Engineered Polymers segment also compounds and blends our PC and mABS plastics into differentiated products for customers within these sectors, as well as into compounds of polypropylene. We have also developed compounds containing post-consumer recycle polymers to respond to what we believe is a growing need for some customers to include recycled content in their products. We are currently focused on reducing costs in order to improve our competitiveness in polycarbonate.

We believe growth in this segment is driven by a number of factors, including consumer preference for lighter weight and impact-resistant products and the development of new consumer electronics, increases in LED lighting applications and continuing growth in medical device applications. Additionally, we believe growth is bolstered by sustainability trends, such as the substitution of lighter-weight plastics for metal in automobiles, as well as more energy efficient, glazing solutions.

 

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In 2013, approximately 50% of our Engineered Polymer segment’s net sales were generated in Europe, approximately 20% were generated in the United States and approximately 15% were generated in Asia, with the remainder in other geographic regions, including Latin America and Canada.

Products and End Uses

Our Engineered Polymers segment consists of PC, compounds and blends and some specialized ABS grades. PC has high levels of clarity, impact resistance and temperature resistance. PC can be used in its neat form (prior to any compounding or blending) for markets such as construction sheet, optical media and LED lighting. Additionally, PC can be compounded or blended with other polymers, such as ABS, which imparts specific performance attributes tailored to the product’s end-use. Our compounds and blends business has a significant position in the PC/ABS blends, which combine the heat resistance and impact strength of PC with the easy to process qualities and resilience of ABS. In addition, we produce ignition resistant polystyrene for consumer electronics applications such as flat screen televisions. We believe our ability to offer technologically differentiated products to meet customer needs sets us apart from our competitors, and with our history as a leading innovator in PC and compounds and blends, we have established ourselves as a leading supplier of PC-based products.

Our products for glazing and construction sheets are marketed under the CALIBRE™ brand name and offer customers a combination of clarity, heat resistance and impact performance. Glazing and construction sheet represents our largest PC application, and is a key growth focus for us. Key end-markets include the construction industry, with additional opportunities for growth with compounded products in the medical device space, consumer electronics and other applications such as smart meter casings that require plastics with enhanced weatherability, ignition resistance and impact performance.

For the automotive industry, we manufacture PC blends under the PULSE™ brand, and we innovate collaboratively with our customers to develop performance solutions to meet the industry’s needs, such as removing weight from vehicles. As a result, we are a key supplier of these products to leading automotive companies in North America and Europe, who tend to specify these products on a per car program platform basis, making it difficult to be displaced as a supplier once selected and providing us with relatively stable and predictable cash flows for several years during the production lifecycle. We are also accelerating our development of similar supply capabilities in rapidly-growing areas such as China.

For the consumer electronics, electrical and lighting and medical device industries, we manufacture our products under the EMERGE™ brand, among others, and we believe that we have substantial growth opportunities in tablets, notebooks, smart phones and other handheld devices, as well as flat screen television sets, and electrical and lighting and medical device components. In serving these markets, we leverage our polymer and compound technologies to meet increasingly stringent performance requirements along with the aesthetic and color-matching requirements which are crucial characteristics for the products involved. The result is that we are a leading and long-standing supplier to many well known brands.

Technology licensing. From time to time, we may seek to opportunistically license our technology to third parties pursuant to licensing arrangements that may be exclusive to a particular geography or product.

Customers

We have a history of innovation in PC and compounds and blends in our Engineered Polymers segment, and we believe that our focus on differentiated products enhances our growth prospects in this segment. We develop tailored polymer, compound and process solutions for our customers and for end-markets such as consumer electronics, we believe that our ability to work with our customers to quickly and effectively develop product solutions is a key to our success. Our innovation has contributed to long-standing relationships with customers

 

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who are recognized leaders in their respective end-markets. We also believe our global facilities are a competitive advantage that allows us to provide customers with consistent grades and position us to strategically serve emerging markets.

Competition

Our principal competitors in our Engineered Polymers segment are Bayer MaterialScience AG, LG Chem Ltd., Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation, Teijin Limited, Borealis AG, Celanese Corporation and LyondellBasell Industries. In our Engineered Polymers segment, we compete primarily based on our ability to offer differentiated products, the reliability of our products, the quality of our customer service and the length and depth of our relationships.

Industry Outlook

We believe we are a leading global producer of PC and PC blends. Smaller competitors tend to operate on a regional basis. We have developed a global, multi-tiered marketing approach targeting the tiered suppliers, as well as final product producers, which we believe most effectively addresses our customers’ needs.

We believe our base PC business will benefit from continued growth in demand of approximately 5% per year as well as capacity absorption following the large capacity additions in 2011 and 2012 by SABIC and other producers. In addition, we believe that capacity expansions in China by some of our competitors are being postponed by several years. Furthermore, some Asian producers, such as Teijin, have announced plans to reduce capacity. As a result of this dynamic, global PC utilization rates are expected to increase by approximately 6% over the next five years.

We also believe that automotive manufacturers will continue the practice of lightweighting vehicles in order to meet increasing fuel efficiency standards, which should increase demand for our compounds and blends products. We believe these same trends towards lighter weights and higher performance materials will also impact other key end-markets such as medical devices, lighting and consumer electronics, and will continue to be a source of growth for our differentiated products.

Our Relationship with Dow

In conjunction with the Acquisition, we entered into certain agreements with Dow, including the Second Amended and Restated Master Outsourcing Services Agreement, which was modified on June 1, 2013 (“SAR MOSA”), the Amended and Restated MOD5 Computerized Process Control Software, Licenses and Services Agreement, with Rofan Services, Inc. which was modified June 1, 2013 (“AR MOD5 Agreement”), site and operating services agreements, and supply agreements.

The SAR MOSA provides for ongoing worldwide services from Dow, in areas such as information technology, enterprise resource planning, finance, environmental health and safety, training, customer service, marketing and sales support, supply chain and purchasing. The term of this agreement runs through December 2020, which automatically renews for two year periods unless either party provides six months’ notice of non-renewal to the other party. The services provided pursuant to the SAR MOSA generally are priced per function, and we have the ability to terminate the services or any portion thereof, for convenience any time after June 1, 2015, subject to payment of termination charges. Services which are “highly integrated” follow a different process for evaluation and termination. In addition, either party may terminate for cause, which includes a bankruptcy, liquidation or similar proceeding by the other party, for material breach which is not cured, or by Dow in the event of our failure to pay for the services thereunder. In the event of a change of control, as defined in the agreement, Dow has the right to terminate the SAR MOSA.

Under the AR MOD5 Agreement, Dow provides worldwide process control technology, including hardware, software licenses and support services, and related enterprise resource planning services. The AR

 

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MOD5 Agreement, with a term through December 2020, may be terminated by either party for cause, which includes a bankruptcy, liquidation or similar proceeding by the other party, for material breach which is not cured by us if we no longer wishes to receive maintenance and support for any licensed software; or by Dow if we use the licensed software for any purposes other than Company business. Dow may terminate the maintenance and support terms at any time if we fail to make payments when due and the default is not corrected within 30 days from notice, or upon two years written notice us, if Dow has made the decision not to support the software systems, provided that Dow will use commercially reasonable efforts to assist us in locating and transitioning to an alternate service provider.

In addition, we entered into various site services agreements with Dow, which were modified as of June 1, 2013, where at Dow owned sites, Dow provides site services to Company. Conversely, we entered into similar agreements with Dow in June 2010, where at Company owned sites, we provide such services to Dow. These agreements cover general services that are provided at specific facilities co-located with Dow, rather than organization-wide services, and include utilities, site administration, environmental health and safety, site maintenance and supply chain. In certain circumstances, the parties may adjust certain prices and volumes. These agreements generally have 25-year terms from the date of the Acquisition, with options to renew. These agreements may be terminated at any time by agreement of the parties, or, by either party, for cause, including a bankruptcy, liquidation or similar proceeding by the other party, or for a material breach which is not cured. In addition, we may terminate for convenience any services that Dow has agreed to provide to us that are identified in any site services agreement as “terminable” with 12 months prior notice to Dow, dependent upon whether the service is highly integrated into Dow operations. With respect to “nonterminable” services that Dow has agreed to provide to us, such as electricity and steam, we generally cannot terminate such agreements prior to the termination date unless we experience a production unit shut down for which we provide Dow with 15-months prior notice, or upon payment of a shutdown fee. Upon expiration or termination, we would be obligated to pay a monthly fee to Dow, which obligation extends for a period of 45 to 60 months following the termination or expiration of each site services agreement. The agreements under which Dow receives services from us may be terminated under the same circumstances and conditions.

We also have operating services agreements with Dow pursuant to which Dow operates and maintains our latex facility at Rheinmunster, Germany, and employs most of the staff for this facility, and pursuant to which we provide the same services to Dow for their Cumene facility in Terneuzen, Netherlands, in each case for an initial term of up to 25 years from the closing date of the Acquisition, or 2020, and will automatically renew for successive five year periods unless either party provides notice of intent not to renew at least 18 months prior to the expiration of such period. We may terminate any operational service under the Rheinmunster agreement in the event that we experience a production unit shut down, with 15-months prior notice to Dow, and Dow may terminate the supply of operational services to us in the event of Dow’s permanent cessation of the operation, also with 15-months prior notice. Dow and we have parallel rights under the Terneuzen agreement, with notice periods extended to 18 months. In addition, either party may terminate for cause, which includes a bankruptcy, liquidation or similar proceeding by the other party, for material breach which is not cured, or by Dow in the event of our failure to pay for the services thereunder.

For the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, we incurred a total of $306.2 million and $320.5 million in expenses under the SAR MOSA, AR MOD5 Agreement, and site services agreements, including $235.1 million and $214.5 million, respectively, for both the variable and fixed cost components of the site service agreements and $71.1 million and $106.0 million, respectively, covering all other agreements.

We have entered into long-term supply agreements whereby Dow supplies ethylene, benzene, butadiene, BPA, and other raw materials amounting to approximately 45% to 50% of our raw materials (based on aggregate purchase price). The ethylene, benzene and butadiene agreements are each for an initial term of up to 10 years from the closing date of the Acquisition. The BPA agreement has an initial term expiring in 2015. These agreements generally do not contain any specific termination provisions and pricing is generally based on standard industry markers with appropriate volume discounts which can be negotiated from time to time.

 

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In addition, we have entered into two contract manufacturing agreements pursuant to which Dow operates and maintains one of its facilities to produce polycarbonate products for us in Freeport, Texas, and we operate and maintain our SAN facility in Midland, Michigan to produce products for Dow, each for an initial term of up to 25 years from the Acquisition date. These agreements generally have 25-year terms, with automatic renewals for five-year terms unless one party gives notice at least 18 months prior to the end of the period. We may terminate any operational service under the agreements in the event that we experience a production unit shut down, with 15-months prior notice to Dow, and Dow may terminate the supply of operational services to us in the event of Dow’s permanent cessation of the operation, also with 15-months prior notice. Furthermore, the agreements may be terminated by mutual agreement between the parties, by either party on notice that the other party fails to cure non-performance or if the other party is in material breach of a material obligation under the agreement within certain parameters, or because of either party’s insolvency.

We have also entered into certain license agreements pursuant to which we have obtained exclusive licenses to use certain of Dow’s intellectual property in connection with the Styron business as it was conducted by Dow and non-exclusive licenses to use certain Dow intellectual property, other than patents, with respect to products outside of the Styron business as it was conducted by Dow prior to the Acquisition, subject to certain limitations. While our license rights are sufficient to allow us to operate our current business, new growth opportunities in latex and, to a lesser extent, plastics involving new products may fall outside of our license rights with Dow. Therefore, our ability to develop new products may be adversely impacted by intellectual property rights that have been retained by Dow.

For the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, purchases and other charges from Dow and its affiliated companies (excluding the SAR MOSA, AR MOD5 Agreement, and site services agreements) were approximately $2,030.3 million and $2,334.2 million, respectively. For the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2012, sales to Dow and its affiliated companies were approximately $294.7 million and $311.4 million, respectively.

We continue to leverage Dow’s scale and operational capabilities by procuring certain raw materials, utilities, site services, and back-office business services from Dow. In connection with the Acquisition, we entered into several agreements with Dow relating to the provision of certain products and services and other operational arrangements. Dow provides significant operating and other services, and certain raw materials used in the production of our products, under agreements that are important to our business. The failure of Dow to perform their obligations, or the termination of these agreements, could adversely affect our operations. See “Risk Factors—Risks relating to our Business and Industry.”

Joint Venture Option Agreement

In connection with the Acquisition in 2010, certain of our affiliates entered into the Latex JV Option Agreement with Dow, pursuant to which Dow was granted an irrevocable option to purchase 50% of the issued and outstanding interests in a joint venture to be formed by Dow and our affiliates with respect to the SB latex business in Asia, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, Eastern Europe, Russia and India (the “Emerging Markets SB Latex Business”) at a purchase price equal to the enterprise fair market value attributable to the Emerging Markets SB Latex Business. Dow has exercised its option under the Latex JV Option Agreement and we subsequently entered into an amendment, effective as of August 9, 2011, to suspend the timing of the Latex JV Option to allow for additional business discussions, through the earlier of June 17, 2015 or the completion of our initial public offering. We are currently in a discussion period with Dow concerning the scope and terms of a joint venture for the Emerging Markets SB Latex Business. We have not finalized the terms or scope of any such joint venture and there is no assurance that we will be able to complete the joint venture on the terms contemplated by the Latex JV Option Agreement, as amended, or at all.

 

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Our Joint Ventures

To supplement our business segments, we have entered into two strategic joint ventures in order to gain access to local markets, minimize costs and accelerate growth in areas we believe have significant business potential.

Americas Styrenics

Launched in 2008, Americas Styrenics is a 50% / 50% joint venture between us and Chevron Phillips Chemical Company. Under the terms of the joint venture agreement, Americas Styrenics is the sole entity through which we can produce, market or sell styrene and polystyrene in North America and South America, and produces a range of HIPS and GPPS products. We believe the venture has capitalized on the strong relationships and technology leadership of its parent companies to maintain a strong industry presence and pursue developing opportunities. Americas Styrenics has benefitted from industry consolidation and the cyclical recovery in the North American styrenics market.

Sumika Styron Polycarbonate Limited

Sumika Styron is a 50% / 50% venture with Sumitomo Chemical of Japan. Sumika Styron has exclusive rights in Japan to manufacture and sell a range of our PC products and facilitates our access to the Japanese PC market. Sumika Styron’s facility is located in an integrated and efficient manufacturing site, and uses Dow technology and production processes.

Sources and Availability of Raw Materials

Our raw materials and procurement group is responsible for the ongoing production, sourcing and procurement of raw materials for each of our business segments. The professionals leading this group have extensive experience in the petrochemical industry buying, selling, and swapping commodity raw materials. Our raw materials group seeks to implement the most efficient and reliable raw material strategy for our business segments, including maintaining a balance between contracted and spot purchases as well as internal production of styrene monomer. While Dow provides a significant portion of our raw materials to us pursuant to supply agreements, including ethylene, benzene, butadiene and BPA, we have developed a comprehensive strategy for obtaining additional sources of supply where needed.

Our agreements with Dow range from 1- to 10-year terms with, in some cases, an automatic 2-year renewal. Minimum and maximum monthly contract quantities were established based on historical consumption rates, and our pricing terms are based on commodity indices in the relevant geography. We obtained approximately 45% of our raw materials from Dow in 2013.

The prices of key raw materials that we purchase, including benzene, ethylene, styrene, butadiene and BPA, are volatile and can fluctuate significantly from time to time. The predominant drivers of this volatility are the prices of crude oil and natural gas as well as the impact of market imbalances in supply and demand from time to time. We have supply contracts in place to help maintain our supply of raw materials at competitive market prices.

Styrene

In addition to purchasing styrene through long-term strategic contracts and opportunistic short-term purchases, we produce styrene internally from purchased ethylene and benzene at our own manufacturing sites. With this mix of purchased and produced styrene, we seek to optimize our overall costs of securing styrene through efficient logistics, manufacturing economics and market dynamics.

 

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We believe the low steam-to-oil ratios (“S/O”) of our styrene production plants make them highly energy efficient as compared to other players in our industry. This technology also uses proprietary catalyst technology that supports operation in low S/O conditions and enables long runs between turnarounds. In addition, the styrene production process leverages in-house computational fluid dynamic and reaction models to predict catalyst activity over time, at varying operating conditions, to optimize run rates.

Benzene and Ethylene

Benzene and ethylene are two commodity petrochemicals that represent the majority of the raw materials needed for styrene production. In 2013, Dow supplied us with approximately 95% of our benzene requirements and 100% of our ethylene requirements through 10-year contracts that commenced in 2010, and include automatic 2-year renewal provisions. The volume of benzene that we purchase from Dow may vary quarterly based on our needs at the time. Our operations that use benzene and ethylene are connected to Dow’s cracker operations where these raw materials are produced by a supply pipeline that facilitates the efficient delivery of our raw material requirements. We monitor these materials and how changes in their costs impact the styrene supply chain and its downstream derivatives. Our pricing formulae with Dow are based on well-known indices for the region and generally include large buyer discounts.

Butadiene

Butadiene is an important raw material for the Synthetic Rubber and Latex segments. Dow is our largest supplier for this material in Europe where we purchase directly from Dow’s existing butadiene extraction facilities pursuant to the terms of a 10-year contract that commenced in 2010 and includes an automatic 2-year renewal term. Other supply sources in Europe include major producers with contract terms of up to five years at competitive market prices. Supply to North America and Asia are exclusively from other major third party producers via supply contracts. As a large purchaser of butadiene, we believe we can continue to secure the raw material reliably at competitive prices.

Bisphenol A (BPA)

BPA is the major raw material associated with PC production. This raw material is produced by Dow in Stade, Germany and is supplied via pipeline to us through a supply contract in Europe that has an initial term expiring in the middle of 2015. We source BPA for our North American operations and Asian joint ventures from other market participants.

Manufacturing

As of March 1, 2014, our Latex segment had 12 production sites that are strategically located throughout the world. We believe these facilities have industry leading quality tracking.

We manufacture all synthetic rubber products at one integrated site at Schkopau, Germany. We believe that our synthetic rubber plant compares favorably to average benchmarks across key cost metrics and is one of the more cost-efficient synthetic rubber production sites in Europe.

We operate our Styrenics segment on a global basis, including plants in China and our integrated Schkopau, Germany site in close proximity to faster growing regions. We believe that our polystyrene plants compare favorably to benchmarks across key cost metrics. Additionally, we believe our joint venture with Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LP, Americas Styrenics, is well-positioned to serve North America and emerging opportunities in South America. We manufacture SAN for Dow under an agreement in our Midland, Michigan facility.

 

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Our Engineered Polymers segment operates on a global basis with manufacturing plants in Stade, Germany and compounding operations in Stade, Germany; Terneuzen, The Netherlands; Hsinchu, Taiwan; and Limao, Brazil. Dow also manufactures for us in Freeport, Texas, using Dow facilities, under an agreement with us. We also have strategic compounding agreements in Asia, North America and Europe and a strategic joint venture with Sumitomo Chemical Co. in Japan. We believe this joint venture partner enables us to gain access to an expanded range of geographies and customers.

Technology

Our R&D and TS&D activities across our segments focus on identifying needs in our customers’ end-markets. As part of our customer-centric model, our R&D/TS&D organization interfaces with our sales and marketing teams and directly with customers to determine their product requirements in light of trends in their industries and market segments. This information is used to select R&D/TS&D projects that are value-enhancing for both our customers and us. Our R&D/TS&D activities and capabilities include:

 

    formulation knowledge, which enables accelerated new product development;

 

    internal capabilities, such as latex pilot coasters and plastics mini plants;

 

    functionalization technology, which is a key capability in our synthetic rubber products to enable us to continue to develop new grades for tire products;

 

    compounding expertise, which comprises knowledge of the compounding process coupled with formulation knowledge and facilitates our ability to develop new compounds and blends to meet evolving needs in various businesses; and

 

    providing a broad product portfolio with innovative solutions to meet customer needs.

Our R&D facilities support our technological capabilities. In addition to our two SB latex pilot coaters and our product development centers, our Plastics and Emulsion Polymers business units operate “mini plants” in Stade and Schkopau, Germany. These mini plants are used to make samples of experimental products for testing, which we believe is a critical step in our new product development process.

R&D and TS&D costs are included in expenses as incurred. Our R&D and TS&D costs for the year ended December 31, 2013, 2012 and 2011 were $49.7 million, $48.3 million and $58.1 million, respectively.

Sales and Marketing

We have a customer-centric business model that has helped us to develop strong relationships with many customers. Including periods prior to the Acquisition when our predecessor business was operated by Dow, we have an average length of key customer relationships exceeding 20 years. Our application development, R&D, TS&D, marketing and sales functions work together to define the customers’ needs and develop technologically differentiated solutions that create value for both the customer and us and result in greater customer intimacy. This can be seen most clearly in competitive applications such as coated paper and packaging board, automotive, consumer electronics, and glazing and construction sheet.

Our sales and marketing teams play a key role in realizing this strategy around technologically differentiated solutions. Our sales and marketing initiatives include:

 

    Developing a solution-centric approach to sales versus a product-centric approach. Our sales and marketing teams understand the trends in the industries and applications served by us, and this is critical to identifying changing customer requirements and providing differentiated value-added products.

 

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    Coordinating account teams effectively to develop and implement customer solutions. We often include sales-people and TS&D engineers in customer activities. Where appropriate, we involve our engineers to develop new applications and respond to fast moving market trends.

 

    Understanding the value chain and effectively deploying our resources across this chain. In some of our end-markets, our immediate customers may be distributors or manufacturers, rather than the original equipment manufacturers. In these instances, our sales and marketing teams may employ a multi-channel marketing approach, developing relationships with the key decision makers across the value chain to develop differentiated, value-added products. For example, our automotive business markets its products: (1) through distributors, (2) directly to a broad range of small, medium and large parts suppliers, and (3) directly to the auto manufacturers themselves.

Our sales and marketing professionals are primarily located at our facilities or at virtual offices within their respective geographies. We have approximately 120 professionals working in sales and marketing around the world, along with approximately 70 customer service professionals and we sell our products to customers in over 75 countries. We primarily market our products through our direct sales force. All of our direct sales are made by our employees in the regions closest to the given customer. Historically, we have focused the majority of our direct sales efforts on large customers and relied on large distributors for sales to smaller accounts. In addition to the key initiatives outlined above, we intend to increase the amount of customers we serve directly.

Information Systems

We use Dow’s Enterprise Resource Planning (“ERP”) software systems to support our operations worldwide. We have the right to use Dow’s ERP software applications and infrastructure under the terms of the SAR MOSA and its related functional statements of work. The SAR MOSA has a current term that expires on December 31, 2020. Under the terms of the SAR MOSA, Dow extends its work processes and the supporting applications and infrastructure for us to use. Under the SAR MOSA, Dow’s work process expertise centers provide the knowledge-base and documentation required for our personnel to follow work process steps and procedures.

We also use Dow’s global data/voice network and server infrastructure for desktop computing, email, file sharing, intranet and internet website access, mainframe and midrange computer access and voice communications. Business software applications are included in the work processes supported under the SAR MOSA. These applications complement a number of our other global ERP applications to provide us with the equivalent of a modern ERP landscape. We use the various ERP applications to manage our day-to-day business processes and relationships with customers and suppliers.

Our manufacturing plants use Dow-developed proprietary process control/process automation technology under the AR MOD5 Agreement. We are licensed to use this technology and receive support and spare parts through the expiration of the current term of the agreement on December 31, 2020. While we are not permitted to use this automation technology for new plants or to substantially expand existing plants, but we can use other technology solutions for those situations. Prior to the expiration of the term of the AR MOD5 Agreement, we expect to migrate our manufacturing plants to a substitute third party process control technology.

Intellectual Property

We evaluate on a case-by-case basis how best to utilize patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets and other intellectual property in order to protect our products and our critical investments in research and development, manufacturing and marketing. We focus on securing and maintaining patents for certain inventions, while maintaining other inventions as trade secrets, derived from our customer-centric business model, in an effort to maximize the value of our product portfolio and manufacturing capabilities. Our policy is to seek appropriate protection for significant product and process developments in the major markets where the relevant products are manufactured or sold. Patents may cover products, processes, intermediate products and

 

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product uses. Patents extend for varying periods in accordance with the date of patent application filing and the legal life of patents in the various countries. The protection afforded, which may also vary from country to country, depends upon the type of subject matter covered by the patent and the scope of the claims of the patent.

In most industrial countries, patent protection may be available for new substances and formulations, as well as for unique applications and production processes. However, given the geographical scope of our business and our continued growth strategy, there are regions of the world in which we do business or may do business in the future where intellectual property protection may be limited and difficult to enforce. We maintain strict information security policies and procedures wherever we do business. Such information security policies and procedures include data encryption, controls over the disclosure and safekeeping of confidential information, as well as employee awareness training. Moreover, we monitor our competitors’ products and, if circumstances were to dictate that we do so, we would vigorously challenge the actions of others that conflict with our patents, trademarks and other intellectual property rights.

We own over 250 patents and have over 200 pending patent applications in various jurisdictions throughout the world covering processes and technology such as material formulations, material process technology and various end-use industrial applications for our materials.

The technologies we utilize in some of our business lines have been in use for many years (e.g., SB latex and ABS) and a number of our patents relating to such technologies have expired or will expire in within the next several years. As patents expire, or are allowed to lapse, the products and processes described and claimed in those patents become generally available for use by the public. We believe that the expiration of any single patent or family of patents that is scheduled to expire in the next 3 years would not materially adversely affect our business or financial results. We believe that our trade secrets relating to manufacturing and other processes used in connection with products to which expiring patents relate will continue to provide us with a competitive advantage after the expiration of these patents.

We use trademarks as a means of differentiating our products. We protect our trademarks against infringement where we deem appropriate.

Dow has either transferred to us or granted perpetual, royalty-free licenses to us to use Dow’s intellectual property that was used by Dow to operate the Styron business prior to the Acquisition. Such intellectual property includes certain processes, compositions and apparatus used in the manufacture of our products. In addition to our license rights to use Dow’s intellectual property related to the Styron business, we have obtained licenses to use Dow’s intellectual property to the extent necessary to perform our obligations under the contracts transferred to us in the Acquisition and to use such intellectual property (other than patents) for products outside of the Styron business as it was conducted by Dow prior to the Acquisition, subject to certain limitations. While we believe our license rights with respect to Dow’s intellectual property are sufficient to allow us to operate our current business, new growth opportunities in latex and, to a lesser extent, plastics involving new products may fall outside of our license rights with Dow. Therefore, our ability to develop new products may be impacted by intellectual property rights that have not been licensed to us by Dow. We have the right, with Dow’s cooperation, to directly enforce the patents that are exclusively licensed to us by Dow where infringement is primarily within the scope of our business but nothing obligates Dow to enforce against third parties the intellectual property rights of Dow that are licensed to us on a non-exclusive basis or where the infringement is primarily outside the scope of our business.

Environmental and Other Regulation

Obtaining, producing and distributing many of our products involve the use, storage, transportation and disposal of toxic and hazardous materials. We are subject to extensive, evolving and increasingly stringent national and local environmental laws and regulations, which address, among other things, the following:

 

    emissions to the air;

 

    discharges to soils and surface and subsurface waters;

 

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    other releases into the environment;

 

    prevention, remediation or abatement of releases of hazardous materials into the indoor or outdoor environment;

 

    generation, handling, storage, transportation, treatment and disposal of waste materials;

 

    maintenance of safe conditions in the workplace;

 

    registration and evaluation of chemicals;

 

    production, handling, labeling or use of chemicals used or produced by us; and

 

    stewardship of products after manufacture.

Some of our products are also subject to food contact regulations.

We maintain policies and procedures to monitor and control environmental, health and safety risks, and to monitor compliance with applicable state, national, and international environmental, health and safety requirements. We have a strong environmental, health and safety organization. Our environmental, health and safety compliance and management programs benefit from access to certain of Dow’s programs. We are also committed to the American Chemistry Council Responsible Care® Guiding Principles for our global facilities and received third party certification of our Responsible Care® Management System in 2013. We have a staff of professionals who are responsible for environmental health, safety and product regulatory compliance. Additionally, we have services agreements with Dow to provide environmental, health and safety services for certain of our facilities. We have implemented a corporate audit program for all of our facilities. However, we cannot provide assurance that we will at all times be in full compliance with all applicable environmental laws and regulations. We expect that stringent environmental regulations will continue to be imposed on us and our industry in general.

In 2011, the National Toxicology Program, or NTP, classified styrene as “reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen”. However, based on current EU classifications and the current draft risk assessment report, the styrene monomer is considered to have low toxicity and is not classified as a carcinogen or mutagen in the EU Nations. We have not seen a significant shift in customer demand away from styrenics products due to this NTP classification. We believe that there are no simple substitutes for our products that can deliver the same performance, quality, safety and cost effectiveness as the current set of products our customers buy from us.

Additionally, in January 2013, the California Environmental Protection Agency Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment provided notice of proposed rulemaking to adopt a Proposition 65 Maximum Allowable Dose Level of 290 micrograms per day for exposures to BPA based upon authoritative bodies listing mechanism “as known to cause reproductive toxicity.” One of our trade associations, the American Chemistry Council, secured a preliminary injunction against this listing. However, even if the listing eventually stands, the levels of BPA in our products are well below this Maximum Allowable Dose Level, and we do not expect this listing will have a material impact on our products or manufacturing operations.

We have actively responded through direct communication to our customers and employees to address perceptions and concerns regarding the safety and environmental impact of our products. Our industry trade associations, the Styrene Information and Research Center and the American Chemistry Council, as well as many of our customers are also active through political advocacy, media relations, legal action, and scientific and regulatory activities.

Similarly, we remain active in our trade associations, which are engaged to respond to potential health concerns involving BPA, Styrene and other chemicals used in our manufacturing processes.

 

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Sustainability and Climate Change

We track our greenhouse gas emissions and recently have completed a project that improved the quality and uniformity of the data we collect so that meaningful emission reduction goals and objectives can be developed and implemented by us. Our July 2013 Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility Report provides our most recent sustainability highlights which includes for 2012, a seven percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from our operations (scope 1), a four percent reduction in electricity use, a 25 percent reduction in volatile organic compound emissions, and a 34 percent reduction in waste, all as compared to the previous year. The report also profiles how our products help our customers improve their own sustainability in areas such as LED lighting, green tires, building insulation, smart meters, life-saving medical devices, and lighter weight.

Chemical Registration

The goal of the U.S. Toxic Substances Control Act (“TSCA”) is to prevent unreasonable risks of injury to health or the environment associated with the manufacture, processing, distribution in commerce, use, or disposal of chemical substances. Under the TSCA, the Environmental Protection Agency has established reporting, record-keeping, testing and control-related requirements for new and existing chemicals. During the past several years, efforts have been underway to reform the TSCA and various legislative initiatives have been introduced most recently the Safe Chemicals Act of 2013 and the Chemical Safety Improvement Act. We actively monitor the progress of these and other legislative developments.

Registration, Evaluation, and Authorization of Chemicals (“REACH”) is the regulatory system for chemicals management in the EU. It requires EU manufacturers and importers to disclose information on the properties of their substances that meet certain volume or toxicological criteria and register the information in a central database to be maintained by the European Chemicals Agency. We have completed the REACH requirements for registration of high-volume and high- hazard substances that we manufacture in or import into Europe and we are currently on track to complete the remaining implementation requirements by the deadline in 2018. Other jurisdictions have enacted legislation similar to REACH. We do not expect that the costs to comply with REACH and similar requirements will be material to our operations and consolidated financial position. We currently do not expect to need to register additional chemicals under REACH until 2018, at which time we will be required to register our low volume chemicals.

Environmental Proceedings

Prior to our separation from Dow, the EPA conducted a multimedia investigation at Dow’s Midland, Michigan sites, including the ABS site that we now operate. The investigation uncovered a number of alleged violations, including of the Clean Air Act’s leak detection and repair program (“LDAR”). LDAR requires chemical and petroleum companies to control fugitive (i.e., non-point source) emissions of hazardous air pollutants that occur from valves, pumps, flanges, connectors and other piping components. We, Dow and the United States executed a consent decree, which was approved by the District Court in Michigan in 2011. The decree provides that Dow will implement an enhanced LDAR program at our ABS facility over a five year period, which is intended to further reduce fugitive emissions at the ABS facility. We are not a defendant in the action, but under the decree, we or any future owner of the affected equipment will be responsible for performing an enhanced LDAR program at the ABS facility should Dow fail to perform. Dow’s failure to perform would subject it to significant stipulated penalties. An implementation agreement has been negotiated between us and Dow, which provides that Dow will bear the costs of the enhanced LDAR program.

Environmental Remediation

Environmental laws and regulations require mitigation or remediation of the effects of the disposal or release of chemical substances. Under some of these regulations, as the current owner or operator of a property, we could be held liable for the costs of removal or remediation of hazardous substances on or under the property, without regard to whether we knew of or caused the contamination, and regardless of whether the practices that

 

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resulted in the contamination were permitted at the time they occurred. At our Allyn’s Point, Connecticut property we lease a portion of the property to our joint venture, Americas Styrenics, for its operations, which includes a regulated hazardous waste boiler. Potential liabilities resulting from our owner status are addressed through financial assurance mechanisms and other agreements. Many of our production sites have an extended history of industrial use, and it is impossible to predict precisely what effect these laws and regulations will have on us in the future. Soil and groundwater contamination has occurred at some of the sites, and might occur or be discovered at other sites. Subject to certain monetary and temporal limitations, Dow is obligated to indemnify and hold us harmless with respect to releases of hazardous material that existed at our sites prior to our separation from Dow in June 2010. However, we cannot be certain that Dow will fully honor the indemnity or that the indemnity will be sufficient to satisfy all claims that we may incur. In addition, we face the risk that future claims might fall outside of the scope of the indemnity, particularly if we experience a release of hazardous materials that occurs in the future or at any time after our separation from Dow. Except for minor monitoring activities that we are performing in Livorno, Italy pursuant to an agreement with Dow, we do not currently have any material obligations to perform environmental remediation on our properties, and any active remedial projects on our properties are being performed by Dow pursuant to its indemnification obligations or for any Superfund sites.

Environmental Programs

We have comprehensive environmental, health and safety compliance, auditing and management programs in place to assist in our compliance with applicable regulatory requirements and with internal policies and procedures, as appropriate. We use Dow’s environmental health and safety programs, including a management system, as a cornerstone of our programs and have contracts in place with Dow for the use of their environmental, health and safety expertise. Each facility has developed and implemented specific critical occupational health, safety, environmental, security and loss control programs. We participate in the chemical industry’s Responsible Care® initiative and have implemented a number of environmental and quality management systems at our facilities. In addition to Responsible Care® Management System certification, as of March 1, 2014 the majority of our sites have received ISO 14001 environmental management system certifications. Additionally, our German facilities have received ISO 50001 energy management system certifications.

We also have implemented an environmental, health and safety (“EH&S”) organizational structure with executive committee level leadership and dedicated environmental experts. We have an EH&S leader at each of our manufacturing sites who is responsible for environmental, health and safety matters at that site. We also have corporate, regional and facility EH&S leaders, as well as a Product Stewardship Organization that manages day-to-day EH&S issues related to our products and customers. Our Process Safety Organization is dedicated to reducing and eliminating process safety incidents.

Facility Security

We recognize the importance of security and safety to our employees and the community. Physical security measures have been combined with process safety measures (including the use of technology), and emergency response preparedness into an integrated security plan. We have conducted vulnerability assessments at our operating facilities in the U.S. and high priority sites worldwide and identified and implemented appropriate measures to protect these facilities from physical and cyber-attacks.

In June 2008, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) identified those facilities that were preliminarily determined to be covered by DHS rules regarding risk-based performance standards for the security of U.S. chemical facilities. Our facilities that were preliminarily determined to be covered conducted and submitted security vulnerability assessments to DHS or have otherwise complied with DHS requirements. Effort and resources in assessing security vulnerabilities and taking steps to reinforce security at our chemical manufacturing facilities will continue to be required to comply with DHS requirements.

 

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Employees

As of December 31, 2013, we had 2,123 full-time employees worldwide. Nearly 88% of our personnel are located at the various manufacturing sites, research and development, pilot coating, paper fabrication and testing and technology centers. The remaining employees are located at operating centers, virtual locations or geographically dispersed marketing and sales locations. Our Midland, Michigan site is the only U.S. facility with union representation for its approximately 55 hourly operations personnel. Other locations with union or work council representation include Altona, Australia; Limao, Brazil; Hamina, Finland; Norrkoping, Sweden; Livorno, Italy; and Schkopau, Boehlen, and Stade, Germany for a total of approximately 600 union represented personnel as of December 31, 2013. Approximately 85% of our employees in Asia Pacific and Europe are represented by work councils or other labor organizations. We consider relations with our personnel and the various labor organizations to be good. There have been no labor strikes or work stoppages in these locations in recent history.

The following table provides a breakdown of the number of our employees by job function and geographic area as of December 31, 2013.

 

     Europe      Latin
America
     North
America
     Asia
Pacific
     Total  

Manufacturing and Engineering

     952         77         147         178         1,354   

Sales & Marketing

     55         8         22         31         116   

Research and Development

     116         8         39         25         188   

Supply Chain

     68         8         7         33         116   

Customer Service

     38         3         10         16         67   

EH&S

     18         0         7         3         28   

Business Administration-HR-Public Affairs

     57         8         48         33         146   

Finance

     37         6         38         27         108   
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

 

Total

     1,341         118         318         346         2,123   

 

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Properties

We own and operate 65 production units at 19 sites around the world. In addition, we source products from another 16 production units at 8 joint venture sites and two production units at a Dow site. We also own or lease other properties, including office buildings, warehouses, research and development facilities, testing facilities and sales offices.

The following table sets forth a list of our principal offices, production sites and other facilities as of March 1, 2014.

 

Site Name   Location   Leased/owned   Products/Functions   Business Segments

Corporate Offices

       

Berwyn

  USA (PA)   Leased   Global operating headquarters  

Hong Kong

  Hong Kong   Leased   Administrative office  

Horgen

  Switzerland   Leased   Administrative office  

Midland

  USA (MI)   Leased   Administrative office  

Sao Paolo

  Brazil   Leased   Administrative office  

Production Sites

       

Allyn’s Point*

  USA (CT)   Owned   Latex   Latex

Boehlen**

  Germany   Leased   Styrene monomer   Styrenics

Dalton

  Georgia   Owned   Latex   Latex

Guaruja**

  Brazil   Leased   Latex   Latex

Hamina

  Finland   Owned   Latex   Latex

Hsinchu

  Taiwan   Owned   Compounds and blends   Engineered Polymers

Limao

  Brazil   Leased   Compounds and blends   Engineered Polymers

Livorno

  Italy   Owned   Latex   Latex

Merak++

  Indonesia   Owned   Latex, polystyrene   Latex/Styrenics

Midland**

  USA (MI)   Leased   ABS, latex   Latex/Engineered Polymers

Norrkoping

  Sweden   Owned   Latex   Latex

Rheinmunster**

  Germany   Leased   Latex   Latex

Schkopau**

  Germany   Leased   ESBR, SSBR, PBR, polystyrene   Synthetic Rubber/Styrenics

Stade**

  Germany   Leased   PC, compounds and blends  

Terneuzen**

  The Netherlands   Leased   Compounds and blends  

Engineered

Polymers/Latex/Styrenics

Tessenderlo**

  Belgium   Leased   Polystyrene   Styrenics

Tsing Yi+

  Hong Kong   Leased   Polystyrene   Styrenics

Ulsan

  Korea   Owned   Latex   Latex

Zhangjiagang**

  China   Leased   Latex   Latex

R&D Facilities

       

Samstagern

  Switzerland   Leased   Latex   Latex

Joint Ventures

       

Americas Styrenics

       

Allyn’s Point

  USA (CT)   Leased   Polystyrene   Styrenics

Cartagena

  Colombia   Owned   Polystyrene   Styrenics

Hanging Rock

  USA (OH)   Leased   Polystyrene   Styrenics

Joliet

  USA (IL)   Owned   Polystyrene   Styrenics

Marietta

  USA (OH)   Owned   Polystyrene   Styrenics

St. James

  USA (LA)   Owned  

Styrene monomer

  Styrenics

Torrance

  USA (CA)   Leased   Polystyrene   Styrenics

Sumika Styron Polycarbonate Limited

       

Nihama

  Japan   Owned   Polycarbonate   Styrenics

 

* Shared site with Americas Styrenics.
** Facility co-located with Dow facilities under ground lease agreements. Plant facilities are owned by us.
+ Facility located on property owned by the applicable government.
++ Facility located on property under certification with right to build.

 

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We believe that our properties and equipment are generally in good operating condition and are adequate for our present needs. Production capacity at our sites can vary depending upon product mix and operating conditions.

Our global production facilities are certified to ISO 9001 standards. Our manufacturing facilities have established reliability and maintenance programs and leverage production between sites to maximize efficiency.

All plants have similar layouts, technology and manufacturing processes, based on the product being manufactured. We believe this global uniformity creates a key competitive advantage for us, and helps lower overall operating costs.

Legal Proceedings

From time to time we may be subject to various legal claims and proceedings incidental to the normal conduct of business, relating to such matters as product liability, antitrust, competition, waste disposal practices, release of chemicals into the environment and other matters that may arise in the ordinary course of our business. We currently believe that there is no litigation pending that is likely to have a material adverse effect on our business. Regardless of the outcome, legal proceedings can have an adverse impact on us because of defense and settlement costs, diversion of management resources and other factors.

 

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MANAGEMENT

Below is a list of the names and ages of our directors as of March 1, 2014 and executive officers and a brief account of the business experience of each of them. The business address of most of our executives is 1000 Chesterbrook Boulevard, Suite 300, Berwyn, Pennsylvania 19312.

 

Name

   Age     

Position

Christopher D. Pappas

     58       Director, President and Chief Executive Officer

John A. Feenan

     53       Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Curtis S. Shaw

     65       Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary

Marilyn N. Horner

     56       Senior Vice President—Human Resources

Marco Levi

     54       Senior Vice President—Business President, Emulsion Polymers

Martin Pugh

     61       Senior Vice President—Business President, Plastics

E. Jeffery Denton

     48       Vice President—Shared Services and Feedstocks

Catherine C. Maxey

     47       Vice President—Public Affairs, Sustainability and Environment, Health and Safety

David Stasse

     43       Vice President—Treasurer

Brian W. Chu

     43       Director

Ailbhe M. Jennings

     50       Director

Seth A. Meisel

     41       Director

Michel G. Plantevin

     57       Director

Stephen M. Zide

     53       Director

Prior to the completion of this offering we anticipate that one director who is not affiliated with us or any of our shareholders will be appointed to the board of directors. In addition, we anticipate that one additional director who is not affiliated with us or any of our shareholders will be appointed to the board of directors within 90 days of the consummation of this offering, and an additional director who is not affiliated with us or any of our shareholders will be appointed to the board of directors within twelve months of the consummation of this offering, resulting in a board of directors that includes at least three independent directors.

Our Directors

We believe that our board of directors is, and we intend that it continue to be, composed of individuals with sophistication and experience in many substantive areas that impact our business. We believe that all of our current board members possess the professional and personal qualifications necessary for board service, and have highlighted the specific experience, qualifications, attributes, and skills that led to the conclusion that each board member should serve as a director in the individual biographies below.

Christopher D. Pappas, Director, President and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Pappas, 58, joined the Company as President and Chief Executive Officer in June 2010. Prior to joining the Company, Mr. Pappas held a number of executive positions at NOVA Chemicals of increasing responsibility from July 2000 to November 2009, most recently as President and Chief Executive Officer of NOVA Chemicals from May 2009 to November 2009, President & Chief Operation Officer from October 2006 to April 2009 and Vice President and President of Styrenics from July 2000 to September 2006. Before joining NOVA Chemicals, Mr. Pappas was Commercial Vice President of DuPont Dow Elastomers where he joined as Vice President of ethylene elastomers in 1995. Mr. Pappas began his chemicals career in 1978 with Dow where he held various sales and managerial positions until 1995. Mr. Pappas is currently a member of the Board of Directors of FirstEnergy Corp., and he is a former member of the Board of Directors of Allegheny Energy, NOVA Chemicals, and Methanex Corporation. Mr. Pappas holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and an MBA from the Wharton School of Business at The University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Pappas is highly qualified to serve on the board by his more than 30 years of management experience with major companies in the chemical industry, by his previous service as a director of the corporations noted above, and by his leadership of the Company since its formation. In these roles he has also acquired and demonstrated substantial financial expertise which is valuable to the Company’s board.

 

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Brian W. Chu, Director. Mr. Chu, 43, became a director of our Company in 2013. Mr. Chu is currently an Operating Partner in the Portfolio Group of Bain Capital Partners, LLC, having joined the firm in 2007. Prior to joining Bain Capital, he was a Vice President and General Manager at The Boston Beer Company. Previously, he was a Manager at Bain & Company, where he worked in a variety of industries including consumer products, industrial manufacturing, technology and health care. Prior to Bain & Company, Mr. Chu held several financial and IT positions in the health care industry. Mr. Chu received an MBA from the Sloan School of Management at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Mr. Chu brings to the board extensive knowledge and expertise in strategy, operations, and finance gained from his experience as a strategy consultant at Bain & Company, his positions at Boston Beer Company, and his position in the Portfolio Group of Bain Capital Partners, LLC. Mr. Chu has been highly involved with our Company since the Acquisition.

Ailbhe M. Jennings, Director. Ms. Jennings, 50, has served as a member of our board of directors since the Acquisition in 2010. She has also served, on a part time basis, as Corporate Manager at Bombardier since 2002 and BMO Nesbitt Burns Trading Corp SA from 2002 to 2012. Since 2004, Ms. Jennings has served as a non-executive director on the board of Element Six S.A. Ms. Jennings has been employed by Bain Capital Luxembourg since 2002 and is on the boards of all of Bain Capital’s Luxembourg companies. Prior to joining Bain Capital in 2002, Ms. Jennings was a deputy managing director and finance director at Banque Pictet, Luxembourg. Prior to this she was a senior audit manager and a Luxembourg Réviseur d’Entreprises with KPMG Luxembourg. Ms. Jennings has 27 years professional experience in the Luxembourg financial services sector. She is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland and holds an MBA from The Open University (UK). Ms. Jennings brings to the board significant audit experience and broad knowledge of accounting.

Seth A. Meisel, Director. Mr. Meisel, 41, became a director of our Company in January 2011. Mr. Meisel is a Managing Director at Bain Capital Partners, LLC, where he has been employed since 1999. Prior to joining Bain Capital, Mr. Meisel worked as a consultant and manager at Mercer Management Consulting in the industrial, financial services and retail industries. Mr. Meisel also serves on the Board of Directors of Unisource Worldwide, Inc. Apex Tool Group, and Consolidated Container Company. Mr. Meisel formerly served on the board of Sensata Technologies. Mr. Meisel received an MBA from Harvard Business School where he was a Baker Scholar and an undergraduate degree from Princeton University. Mr. Meisel brings to the board broad knowledge of, and expertise in, mergers, acquisitions and financing. In addition, Mr. Meisel has had significant involvement with the Company since the Acquisition, and has served as a director of numerous public and private companies during his career in private equity and consulting.

Michel G. Plantevin, Director. Mr. Plantevin, 57, has served as a member of our board of directors since the Acquisition in 2010. Mr. Plantevin is a Managing Director of Bain Capital Europe, LLP. Prior to joining Bain Capital in 2003, Mr. Plantevin was a Managing Director of Goldman Sachs International in London, initially in the Investment Banking division, then in the Merchant Banking division (PIA). Prior to Goldman Sachs International, he was a consultant with Bain & Company in London and later headed the Bain & Company Paris Office as a Managing Director. He also serves as a director of Bravida Holding AB, Maisons du Monde, FCI, S.A., IMCD Group BV, and NXP Semiconductors N.V. Mr. Plantevin received an MBA from Harvard Business School and an undergraduate and Master’s degree in Engineering from the Ecole Supérieure d’ Electricité (Supélec) in France. Mr. Plantevin brings to the board an expertise in business strategy and operational improvement gained from his extensive experience as a strategy consultant in the Paris and London offices of Bain & Company and then as a private equity professional. Mr. Plantevin has also had significant involvement with our Company since the Acquisition, and has served as a director of numerous public and private companies during his career in private equity, investment banking and consulting.

Stephen M. Zide, Director. Mr. Zide, 53, became a director of our Company in 2010 upon consummation of the Acquisition. Mr. Zide is a Managing Director of Bain Capital Partners, LLC in the private equity business, having joined the firm in 1997. He currently heads the firm’s New York office and leads its North American

 

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Industrial Sector. Prior to joining Bain Capital, Mr. Zide was a partner of the law firm of Kirkland & Ellis LLP. He currently serves as a director of Sensata Technologies B.V., HD Supply, Consolidated Container Corporation, and Apex Tool Group. Mr. Zide formerly served on the board of Innophos Holdings, Inc. Mr. Zide received an MBA from Harvard Business School, a J.D. from Boston University School of Law and a B.A. from the University of Rochester. Mr. Zide brings to the board extensive knowledge and expertise in strategy, mergers, and acquisitions gained from his training and experience as a legal advisor and then as a private equity professional. In addition, Mr. Zide has had significant involvement with the Company since the Acquisition, and has served as a director of numerous public and private companies during his career in private equity and law.

Our Executive Officers

Biographical information concerning our President and Chief Executive Officer, who also serves as a member of our board of directors, is set forth above under “—Our Directors.”

John A. Feenan, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Feenan, 53, joined the Company in January 2012 as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. He is responsible for corporate financial reporting, audit, treasury, tax and internal controls. Previously, Mr. Feenan served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of the JMC Steel Group, from February 2007 until January 2012, where he also served as a member of the disclosure, compliance, pension and ethics committees and an active participant in the Board and Audit Committees. Prior to that, Mr. Feenan served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at HB Fuller, a global specialty chemical firm, from March 2003 until January 2007. Prior to HB Fuller, Mr. Feenan held Chief Financial Officer positions with several industrial manufacturing firms. He started his career at the IBM Corporation in New York. Mr. Feenan earned his bachelor’s degree in business and economics from St. Anselm College and his master’s in business administration from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He is a Certified Management Accountant (CMA) and a Certified Green Belt, Lean Six Sigma.

Curtis S. Shaw, Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary. Mr. Shaw, 65, joined the Company as Executive Vice President and General Counsel in July 2010 and was given the added responsibility of Corporate Secretary in May 2012. He is responsible for all legal affairs for Trinseo as well as corporate development and mergers and acquisitions, and is a member of the Trinseo Executive Leadership Team. Previously he served as Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of Celanese Corporation from April 2005 to March 2009. Prior to that, Mr. Shaw served as Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of Charter Communications from 2003 to April 2005, and, prior thereto, as its Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary from 1997 to 2003. He served as Corporate Counsel at NYNEX Corporation from 1988 to 1996. Mr. Shaw joined Occidental Chemical Corporation in 1983, where he served in positions of increasing responsibility until 1987, culminating with the position of Vice President and General Counsel of the Electrochemicals, Detergents & Specialty Chemicals Division. Prior thereto, he served in various legal roles at Olin Corporation. He began his career in private practice at Mudge Rose Guthrie & Alexander and at Shearman & Sterling from 1973 to 1980. Mr. Shaw received a J.D. degree from Columbia University School of Law in 1973, and B.A. degree with honors in Economics from Trinity College in 1970.

Marilyn N. Horner, Senior Vice President—Human Resources. Ms. Horner, 56, joined the Company as Senior Vice President of Human Resources in January 2011. Prior to joining the Company Ms. Horner held a number of executive positions at NOVA Chemicals where she started her career in 1988. Most recently she served as the Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer for NOVA Chemicals from 2008 to December 2010. Ms. Horner also held the positions of Vice President Finance and Controller, Olefins / Polyolefins Division; Vice President Human Resources and Organizational Effectiveness; and Vice President to the Chief Executive Officer. Ms. Horner served on the board of trustees for Point Park University and the University of Alberta. Ms. Horner holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree and an MBA from the University of Windsor, Ontario, Canada.

 

 

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Marco Levi, Senior Vice President—Business President, Emulsion Polymers. Mr. Levi, 54, joined the Company as Vice President—General Manager in June 2010 and is responsible for the global leadership of the Company’s Emulsion Polymers business. Previously, Mr. Levi was General Manager, Emulsion Polymers of Styron (when it was a Dow division) from July 2009 until June 2010. Prior to that, Mr. Levi was global business unit director for Dow Elastomers and Specialty Plastics from February 2008 until July 2009, (and Plastic Additives commencing in April 2009). Mr. Levi previously served as global business director for Elastomers at Dow from November 2006 until February 2008. In these roles, he was responsible for the Elastomers, Plastic Additives, Specialty Packaging and Films and Synthetic Rubber businesses. Prior to that, he was sales director for Thermosets Europe from March 2004 until November 2006. Mr. Levi received a bachelor’s degree in industrial chemistry from the Università degli Studi in Milan, Italy, in 1984.

Martin Pugh—Senior Vice President and Business President, Plastics. Mr. Pugh, 61, joined Styron on March 1, 2013 as Senior Vice President and Business President, Plastics, located in Horgen, Switzerland. Mr. Pugh is responsible for the global leadership of the Company’s Plastics business with overall accountability for Styrenic Polymers, Automotive and Polycarbonate Compounds and Blends (PCC&B). Prior to joining Styron, Mr. Pugh held the position of President for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and board member for Styrolution Group Gmbh, the global styrenics joint venture between BASF Group and INEOS from October 2011 until February 2013. Mr. Pugh began his career in 1975 with Mobil Oil Company as a technical representative. He joined The Dow Chemical Company in 1978 and served in a variety of sales and marketing roles from 1978 until 1998, working in the UK, Dubai, Sweden and Switzerland. His final role at Dow was global business director for Specialty Polyethylenes. In 1998, Pugh joined Elementis plc as Managing Director for the specialty rubber division called Linatex. In 2002, he returned to Switzerland and joined Nova Chemicals as Managing Director for Europe. Following the formation of Nova Innovene in 2005, he was appointed Managing Director of the company and continued in the role of Managing Director—Europe as the company was broadened to include the Americas region and renamed INEOS Nova. He remained in this position within INEOS Nova and INEOS Styrenics until the formation of Styrolution Group GmbH in October 2011. Mr. Pugh has a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Chemistry and Management Studies from Loughborough University in the United Kingdom.

E. Jeffery Denton, Vice President—Shared Services and Feedstocks. Mr. Denton, 48, joined the Company as Vice President—Shared Services and Feedstocks in June 2010 and is responsible for the Company’s feedstocks, purchasing and shared service operations. He previously served in a similar role at Styron (when it was a division of Dow) from September 2009 until June 2010 and as the Director of Joint Venture Implementation at Dow, implementing Americas Styrenics & K-Dow from February 2006 until September 2009. Prior to that, he served as Product Director of Dow Polystyrene and Commercial Manager of Dow Polystyrene and Engineering Plastics from 1998 to January 2007. Mr. Denton received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Alma College.

Catherine C. Maxey, Vice President—Public Affairs, Sustainability and Environment, Health and Safety. Ms. Maxey, 48, joined the Company as Vice President—Public Affairs and Business Intelligence in June 2010. Previously she held positions of increasing responsibility at The Dow Chemical Company, which she joined in 1988, most recently as Public Affairs director for Mergers & Acquisitions, Joint Ventures, Dow Portfolio Optimization/Divestitures and Manufacturing and Engineering from March 2009 until June 2010. Prior to that, she served as vice president of Public Affairs and Communications for K-Dow Petrochemicals, a planned JV that was later cancelled from June 2008 until March 2009 and Business Public Affairs Director for Performance Chemicals from 2003 to June 2008. She formerly served on the board of the Literacy Council of Midland County. Ms. Maxey received a bachelor’s degree in journalism/science writing from Lehigh University.

David Stasse, Vice President—Treasurer. Mr. Stasse, 43, joined the Company as Vice President and Treasurer in July 2013 with responsibility for all treasury matters, including cash management, risk management, relationships with rating agencies and commercial banks, and financing matters. Mr. Stasse joined the Company from Freescale Semiconductor, Inc., a global semiconductor manufacturer that serves the automotive,

 

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networking, consumer and industrial markets, where he served as Vice President and Treasurer since July 2008, and Assistant Treasurer from August 2006 to July 2008. Prior to that, Mr. Stasse served as First Vice President, Debt Capital Markets of MBNA Corporation and as Treasury Manager of SPX Corporation. Mr. Stasse also held numerous financial positions from 1998 to 2004 at Honeywell International, last serving as Director, Corporate Finance. Mr. Stasse holds a MBA in Finance from the University of Maryland and a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Logistics from Penn State University.

Board Composition and Election of Directors

Our board of directors consists of six directors, with each director having been appointed to six year terms. Each director is re-eligible to serve and may be removed at any time, with or without cause, by a resolution of our shareholders at a general meeting. All appointments to the board of directors will be decided by the shareholder at a general meeting. If the office of a director becomes vacant, the other directors, acting by a simple majority, may fill the vacancy on a provisional basis until a new director is appointed by the shareholder at the next general meeting.

Family Relationships

There are no family relationships between any of our executive officers or directors.

Board Structure

Our governance structure combines the roles of President and Chief Executive Officer. The board of directors continues to believe there are important advantages to Mr. Pappas serving in both roles at this time. Mr. Pappas is the director most familiar with our business and industry and is best situated to propose the board of directors’ agendas and lead board discussions on important matters. Mr. Pappas provides a strong link between management and the board of directors, which promotes clear communication and enhances strategic planning and implementation of corporate strategies.

Our board of directors monitors our exposure to a variety of risks through our audit committee. Our audit committee charter gives the audit committee responsibilities and duties that include discussing with management, the internal audit department and the independent auditors our major financial risk exposures and the steps management has taken to monitor and control such exposures, including our risk assessment and risk management policies.

We expect to avail ourselves of certain exceptions available to controlled companies under the rules of the             . As a result, we will not be required to have a board of directors comprised of a majority of independent directors, or a nominating committee, or a compensation committee comprised entirely of independent directors. As a result, you may not have the same protections as you would if we were not controlled. The controlled company exception does not modify the independence requirements for the audit committee. Upon the completion of this offering, we will be required to have an audit committee composed of at least three members, a majority of whom must be independent within 90 days of the date of this prospectus, and all of whom must be independent within one year of the date of this prospectus.

Audit Committee

The purpose of the audit committee will be set forth in the audit committee charter. The audit committee’s primary duties and responsibilities will be to:

 

    Appoint or replace, compensate and oversee the outside auditors for the purpose of preparing or issuing an audit report or related work or performing other audit, review or attest services for us. The outside auditors will report directly to the audit committee.

 

 

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    Pre-approve all auditing services and permitted non-audit services (including the fees and terms thereof) to be performed for us by our outside auditors, subject to de minimis exceptions which are approved by the audit committee prior to the completion of the audit.

 

    Review and discuss with management and the outside auditors the annual audited and quarterly unaudited financial statements, our disclosures under “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and the selection, application and disclosure of critical accounting policies and practices used in such financial statements. Review and approve all related party transactions.

 

    Discuss with management and the outside auditors significant financial reporting issues and judgments made in connection with the preparation of our financial statements, including any significant changes in our selection or application of accounting principles, any major issues as to the adequacy of our internal controls and any special steps adopted in light of material control deficiencies.

Upon completion of this offering, our audit committee will consist of             ,         and             .         is both an independent director and an “audit committee financial expert” within the meaning of Item 407 of Regulation S-K, and will serve as chair of the audit committee. Prior to the consummation of this offering, our board of directors will adopt a written charter under which the audit committee will operate. A copy of the charter, which will satisfy the applicable standards of the SEC and the exchange on which we list our ordinary shares, will be available on our website.

Compensation Committee

The purpose of the compensation committee is to assist the board of directors in fulfilling its responsibilities relating to oversight of the compensation of our directors, executive officers and other employees and the administration of our benefits and equity-based compensation programs. The compensation committee reviews and recommends to our board of directors compensation plans, policies and programs and approves specific compensation levels for all executive officers. Upon completion of this offering, the compensation committee will consist of             and        . Prior to the consummation of this offering, our board of directors will adopt a written charter under which the compensation committee will operate. A copy of the charter, which will satisfy the applicable standards of the SEC and the exchange on which we list our ordinary shares, will be available on our website.

Compensation Committee Interlocks and Insider Participation

All compensation and related matters are reviewed by our compensation committee. Upon the completion of this offering, our compensation committee will consist of             and        . Each of              and         is         affiliated with Bain Capital Partners, LLC. For additional information regarding transactions between Bain Capital Partners, LLC and us, please see “Certain Relationships and Related Party Transactions” below.

Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee

The nominating and corporate governance committee is responsible for (i) identifying, screening and reviewing individuals qualified to serve as directors (consistent with criteria approved by our board of directors) and recommending to our board candidates for nomination for election at the annual meeting of shareholders or to fill board vacancies or newly created directorships; (ii) developing and recommending to our board of directors and overseeing the implementation of our corporate governance guidelines (if any); (iii) overseeing evaluations of our board of directors and (iv) recommending to our board of directors candidates for appointment to board committees.

Our nominating and corporate governance committee consists of             and         .

 

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Operating Committee

Our operating committee is responsible for developing our overall business plan and defining and implementing our business strategy. The committee makes recommendations to our board of directors in connection with our operational business matters.

Our operating committee consists of Brian Chu, Seth Meisel, Christopher Pappas, Michel Plantevin, and Stephen Zide.

Code of Business Conduct

We have adopted a Code of Business Conduct applicable to all of our directors, officers and employees, and a Code of Financial Ethics applicable to our principal executive, financial and accounting officers, and all persons performing similar functions. A copy of each of those Codes is available on our website at www.trinseo.com. If we make any substantive amendments to these Codes, or grant any waivers, including any implicit waivers, from the provisions of these Codes, we will make a disclosure on our website or in a report on form 8-K. Our Code of Business of Conduct is supported by a number of subsidiary policies which are specifically referenced on the Code, and several of which are also available on our corporate website. Our website and the information contained on that site, or accessible through that site, are not incorporated into and are not a part of this prospectus.

We maintain an ethics and compliance committee, which is responsible for assisting our audit committee and Chief Compliance Officer in developing, implementing, supervising and maintaining our Code of Business Conduct and related corporate policies.

The ethics and compliance committee consists of eight members of our management and is chaired by our Chief Compliance Officer.

 

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EXECUTIVE COMPENSATION

Compensation Discussion and Analysis

This compensation discussion and analysis section is intended to provide information about our 2013 compensation objectives and programs for our named executive officers. For 2013, our named executive officers, or NEOs, were Christopher D. Pappas, President and Chief Executive Officer; John A. Feenan, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer; Curtis S. Shaw, Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary; Marco Levi, Senior Vice President and Business President of Emulsion Polymers; and Martin Pugh, Senior Vice President and Business President of Plastics.

Compensation Philosophy and Implementation

Our executive compensation policies and programs are designed to attract, retain and motivate key executives through competitive and cost effective programs that reinforce executive accountability and reward the achievement of business and individual results. Executive compensation consists of four main elements: (a) base salary, (b) annual performance awards, (c) long-term incentive compensation, and (d) retirement savings and benefit programs. The relative weighting of each element is aligned with our philosophy of linking pay to performance. A substantial percentage of executives’ compensation is provided in the form of performance-based variable compensation with a greater emphasis on variable components for the our senior executives. Annual incentive compensation awards are directly linked to corporate and business unit results, and the performance measures are aligned with shareholder and other key stakeholders’ interests, including financial and non-financial goals. Executive retirement and benefits programs are generally consistent with broader employee programs offered in the country where an executive primarily provides services to the Company. We provide limited perquisites to our executives and senior management, and such perquisites are only provided to the extent that they reflect particular business needs and objectives.

Our compensation committee was formed in October 2010. Prior to October 2010, compensation determinations were made primarily by our Chief Executive Officer and/or our Board. Many of the compensation policies and programs for our NEOs that are described below were the product of negotiations between the NEOs and our Chief Executive Officer and/or our Board. The compensation committee is responsible for, among other matters: (1) reviewing key executive compensation goals, policies, plans and programs; (2) reviewing and approving the compensation of our executive officers; (3) reviewing and approving employment agreements and other similar arrangements between the Company and our executive officers; and (4) administering equity based plans and other incentive compensation plans.

Our Chief Executive Officer reviews annually with the compensation committee each NEO’s performance (other than his own) and recommends to the compensation committee appropriate base salary, cash performance awards and long-term equity incentive awards for these NEOs. Based upon the recommendations of our Chief Executive Officer and in consideration of certain objectives and philosophies described above, the compensation committee makes the final recommendation to the Board for annual compensation packages of our executive officers other than our Chief Executive Officer. The compensation committee and/or the Board reviews annually our Chief Executive Officer’s performance and the compensation committee recommends to the Board his base salary, cash performance awards and grants of long-term equity incentive awards based on its assessment of his performance.

The compensation committee has the authority to retain outside independent executive compensation consultants to assist in the evaluation of executive officer compensation. The compensation committee also has the sole authority to retain, at the Company’s expense, and terminate any such consultant, including the sole authority to approve such consultant’s fees and other retention terms. However, all decisions regarding compensation of executive officers are made by the Board, upon the recommendation of the compensation committee. At this time, no compensation consultant has been retained by the compensation committee, however the compensation committee may consider retaining a compensation consultant as we transition to becoming a public company.

 

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Our Board has adopted a written charter for the compensation committee, which is available on our corporate website at www.trinseo.com. Our website and the information contained on that site or accessible through that site, are not incorporated into and are not a part of this prospectus.

Management Transition

In March 2013, Martin Pugh was named Senior Vice President and Business President of Plastics located in Horgen, Switzerland. Prior to joining Trinseo, Mr. Pugh was the President for Europe Middle East Africa and board member for Styrolution Group Gmbh, the global styrenics joint venture between BASF Group and Ineos.

Components of Compensation

The principal components of our NEO and other executive compensation include both short-term and long-term compensation. Short-term compensation consists of an executive’s annual base salary and annual cash performance award. Long-term compensation may include grants of share-based incentives as well as cash retention awards, as determined by the Board and the compensation committee. Certain elements of compensation of our NEOs were determined through direct negotiation with the executives at the time of their hiring.

In making decisions with respect to any element of an NEO’s compensation, the compensation committee considered the total compensation that may be awarded to the officer, including salary, annual bonus and long-term incentive compensation. In addition, in reviewing and approving employment agreements for our NEOs, the compensation committee considered the other benefits to which the officer is entitled by the agreement, including compensation payable upon termination of the executive’s employment under a variety of circumstances. Our goal is to award compensation that is competitive to attract and retain highly qualified leaders and motivate high business performance. We believe that our compensation programs align executive and shareholder interests as well as vary compensation based on each executive’s individual contributions to the Company and the Company’s performance.

Base Salary

Setting appropriate levels of base pay ensures that we can attract and retain an executive leadership team that will continue to meet our commitments to customers and sustain profitable growth for our shareholders. The base salaries for our NEOs were determined based on the scope of their responsibilities, taking into consideration our compensation committee members’ collective knowledge of competitive compensation. Base salaries are reviewed annually by the compensation committee and adjusted from time to time to reflect individual responsibilities, performance and experience, as well as market compensation levels. Mr. Pugh was hired in 2013, and his base salary was set by the compensation committee at a level determined to be appropriate given his experience and the base salaries of the other members of our executive team at his level. In 2013, the NEOs, other than Mr. Pugh, received base salary increases. Messrs. Feenan and Shaw received increases consistent with the increases received by other employees in the U.S. and Mr. Levi received an increase in recognition of his overall industry experience and performance, with the amount of such increase determined after taking into account the base salaries of other executive officers. Mr. Pappas received an increase in his base salary as a result of arms-length negotiations in connection with his renegotiated employment agreement. Mr. Pugh’s annual base salary for 2013 was prorated to reflect the period of time he actually worked for Trinseo.

Annual Performance-Based Cash Incentive Plan

We have an annual performance-based cash incentive plan that is designed to serve as an incentive to drive annual financial and non-financial performance. During 2013, the target annual performance bonus under this annual plan for each NEO was based on a percentage of base salary ranging from 150%, in the case of Mr. Pappas, to 75%, in the case of Mr. Feenan and Mr. Shaw, to 55%, in the case of Mr. Levi and Mr. Pugh.

 

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Cash awards are based on a combination of the achievement of Company performance goals as well as individual performance. The performance goals and metrics are recommended by the compensation committee to the Board at the beginning of the year. At the end of the year, the amount paid to each NEO is based on the achievement of the Company performance goals and an assessment of the executive’s overall performance.

For 2013, the annual performance award plan was designed to align our executives’ compensation with the organization’s focus and priorities for the year, and reward performance based on four key metrics:

 

    Responsible Care®: Injuries, Spills and Process Safety Incidents (PSIs),

 

    EBITDA: excluding joint venture companies’ dividends and reflecting current cost of raw materials,

 

    Fixed Costs: including selling, administrative, R&D, supply chain, manufacturing, and maintenance expenses, and

 

    Individual Goals: Performance against preset team/individual goals.

 

           Metrics  
     Weight     Not Met     Target     Exceeds  

Performance Goal

        

1. Responsible Care ®

        

Recordable Injuries *

     5     7        5        3   

Loss of Primary Containment *

     5     14        9        4   

Process Safety Incidents *

     5     2        1        0   
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Sub-total

     15     0     100     200
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

2. Financial Performance

        

2013 EBITDA Target (Per 2013 Business Plan)

     50     0     125     230

2013 Fixed Costs Target (Per 2013 Business Plan)

     15     0     100     N/A   

3. Individual Goals **

     20     0     100     200
  

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Total Opportunity at Target

     100      

Maximum Opportunity

     200      

 

* Metrics represent incident count.
** In 2013, all Individual Goals have an EBITDA component tied to either corporate or business EBITDA; goal carries a weight of up to 40%. (For example, if individual EBITDA goal is weighted at 40%, the goal carries a weight of 8% of the total goals weight (40% of 20%)).

In 2013, Company performance metrics were based on an adjusted EBITDA target of $356.0 million (excluding dividends from joint venture companies of $23.6 million and $4.4 million in realized losses from foreign exchange forward contracts; and including an adjustment of $40.4 million to reflect current cost of raw materials), Responsible Care® (environmental, health and safety metrics), and a controlled overhead/fixed costs target of $624.0 million. As a company with a substantial amount of indebtedness and volatile raw materials prices, we believe that adjusted EBITDA and controlled overhead/fixed costs are important measures of our financial performance and ability to service our indebtedness and we use them as the target metrics for our annual cash incentive plan. adjusted EBITDA is a non-GAAP measure used internally and is measured by taking net income (loss) and adding back interest charges, income taxes, depreciation and amortization and other adjustments which eliminate the impact of certain items that we do not consider indicative of our ongoing operating performance. Our adjusted EBITDA and controlled overhead/fixed costs financial performance target metrics for the 2013 annual performance awards are set consistent to our 2013 business plan that has been approved by the Board but adjusted to exclude dividends from joint venture companies and reflecting current cost of raw materials. For a discussion of adjusted EBITDA see Note 3 to “Summary Consolidated Financial and Other Data” elsewhere in this prospectus. In addition to adjusted EBITDA and controlled overhead/fixed costs, we also believe best-in-class environmental, health and safety metrics, as well as individual performance, are important measures for establishing performance objectives and measuring the performance of our NEOs.

 

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We are a Responsible Care® company and our EH&S policy states that protecting people and the environment is part of everything we do and every decision we make. Each employee has a responsibility to ensure that our products and operations meet applicable government or company standards. The 2013 performance award bonus plan includes three (3) key metrics that we track for our company—Recordable Injuries as defined by OSHA, Process Safety Incidents as defined by the American Chemistry Council and Loss of Primary Containment defined as any physical device used to contain a chemical or plastic resin as part of our manufacturing processes. Incentive payouts with respect to these metrics are determined based on our achievement rating for Responsible Care® performance and in accordance with the threshold and target levels set forth in the preceding table.

In 2013, the individual annual objectives established for our NEOs varied depending on the primary areas of responsibility of each NEO as well as common areas of emphasis, which include customer growth and strategy, financial goals including revenue generation, cost control, margin improvement and cash management, and non-financial goals including people leadership, performance management and compliance. We set the NEOs’ individual objectives at a level that is intended to be achievable, but challenging. The individual objectives for our NEOs in 2013 focused on the following areas, combining both objective and subjective performance goals: corporate or business EBITDA; asset, product optimization and customer profitability; organizational effectiveness; and cost management.

Based on our achievement rating for Responsible Care® performance, our financial results for 2013 with respect to adjusted EBITDA and controlled overhead/fixed costs, and the compensation committee’s determination of their achievement level with respect to their individual performance goals, each as described below, Messrs. Pappas, Feenan, Shaw, Levi and Pugh were awarded 107%, 103%, 99%, 94% and 104% of the target annual bonus, respectively. The table below shows the 2013 target annual bonus for each NEO and the actual bonus payable, based on our performance.

 

Name    Target Percentage     Target Amount      Actual Amount  

Christopher D. Pappas

     150   $ 1,500,000       $ 1,600,000   

John A. Feenan

     75   $ 450,000       $ 465,000   

Curtis S. Shaw

     75   $ 393,750       $ 390,000   

Marco Levi(2)

     55   $ 311,862       $ 291,611   

Martin Pugh(1)(2)

     55   $ 326,712       $ 283,510   

 

(1) The actual amount received by Mr. Pugh was pro-rated for the period between March 1 and December 31, 2013.

 

(2) Mr. Levi’s and Mr. Pugh’s compensation is payable in Swiss Francs (or CHF) and was converted using the foreign exchange rate of US$1.08 to CHF1.00 and US$1.07 to CHF1.00, respectively. These rates have been determined by averaging the exchange rates in effect during 2013.

In 2013, our achievement rating for Responsible Care® performance qualified each NEO for a 19% cash incentive payout based on the actual results below:

 

                  Metrics         
     Actual Payout     Actual      Not Met      Target      Exceeds  

Responsible Care ®

             

Recordable Injuries *

     0     9         7         5         3   

Loss of Primary Containment *

     9     5         14         9         4   

Process Safety Incidents *

     10     0         2         1         0   
  

 

 

   

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

 

Total

     19           

 

* Metrics represent incident count.

 

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In addition, based on our assessment of our financial performance for 2013, we determined that our financial performance thresholds (i.e., adjusted EBITDA and fixed costs) were met for 2013. Based on the preliminary financial results, adjusted EBITDA for 2013 was $330 million, resulting in 44% of the adjusted EBITDA portion of the bonus becoming payable, and the fixed cost target was met, resulting in 15% of the fixed cost portion being payable. Annual bonuses for our NEOs were determined and approved based on these preliminary results. After annual bonuses for our NEOs were approved, EBITDA was determined to be $325 million based on audited financial results.

In addition, each NEO had personal performance goals that may have included: corporate or business EBITDA; asset, product optimization and customer profitability; organizational effectiveness; and cost management. The results achieved against each of these goals were assessed by the compensation committee and ratings assigned. Based on its assessment of subjective individual performance criteria and our assessment of corporate and business adjusted EBITDA for 2013, the Board determined that Messrs. Pappas, Feenan, Shaw, Levi and Pugh qualified for a 29%, 25%, 21%, 16% and 26% cash incentive payout, respectively, against their personal performance goals.

The following table shows the contribution of each performance metric under our incentive plan to the actual bonus award earned by our NEOs.

 

    

Weighted Contribution Toward Cash Incentive Payout

 
     Financial Performance  
     Responsible Care®     EBITDA Target     Fixed Cost Target     Individual Goals     Actual award %
(% of target
award)
 
     (15% of target
opportunity)
    (50% of target
opportunity)
    (15% of target
opportunity)
    (20% of target
opportunity)
   

Christopher D. Pappas

     19     44     15     29     107

John A. Feenan

     19     44     15     25     103

Curtis S. Shaw

     19     44     15     21     99

Marco Levi

     19     44     15     16     94

Martin Pugh

     19     44     15     26     104

Special Cash Retention Award Opportunity

On March 26, 2013, the board of directors approved a special cash retention award for certain key employees. The purpose of the award is to maintain stability of Trinseo’s executives by providing an incentive for these individuals to remain with Trinseo during the approximately 18-month period over which the award vests. The board of directors believes that the award is an important component of its compensation package to attempt to enable business strategy execution.

The terms of each cash retention award are set forth in an award agreement between the Company and the employee. The total cash amount of the special retention award is equal to 50% of the employee’s base salary as of the date of grant. The right to receive any amount is contingent on continuous full-time employment with the Company through July 1, 2014. Any unvested amounts will be forfeited upon termination of full-time employment. The cash retention awards will be paid out in July 2014, subject to the vesting condition described above.

The total amounts of the special retention award, subject to the vesting requirements set forth above, for the named executive officers are:

 

Named Executive Officer

   $ Amount  

Christopher D. Pappas

   $ 500,000   

Curt Shaw

   $ 262,500   

Marco Levi(1)

   $ 283,508   

John Feenan(2)

   $ —     

Martin Pugh(2)

   $ —     

 

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(1) Mr. Levi’s cash retention award will be paid in Swiss Franc in the amount of CHF 262,503, converted to US$, for disclosure purposes, using an average foreign exchange rate of US$1.08 to CHF1.00 in 2013.
(2) Messrs. Feenan and Pugh are not eligible to receive this special cash retention award given their employment date.

Executive Subscription and Securityholder’s Agreements

In connection with the Acquisition and the subsequent recruitment of our executive team, our Parent, and certain investment funds advised or managed by Bain Capital Partners, LLC entered into certain Executive Subscription and Securityholder’s Agreements (as amended and restated, the “Executive Subscription Agreements”) with certain members of our management team, including our NEOs. Mr. Feenan, who was hired in 2012 and Mr. Pugh who was hired in 2013, entered into separate Executive Subscription Agreements in accordance with the terms of their employment agreements. The Executive Subscription Agreements provide for sales of Classes A through F of the ordinary shares of our Parent (the “co-invest shares”) and Classes G through L of ordinary shares of our Parent (the “incentive shares”), subject to certain conditions. Our NEOs (other than Mr. Feenan and Mr. Pugh) invested a total of $1,775,010 for the co-invest shares issued under the Executive Subscription Agreements. We believe that by providing our senior management with a meaningful equity stake in us, we are better able to align the interests of our named executive officers with those of our shareholders and create value for our shareholders.

Under the Executive Subscription Agreements, in the case of our NEOs other than Mr. Pappas, 50% of incentive shares issued are subject to time vesting over five years with 40% of these vesting on the second anniversary of the date of grant and the remaining portion vesting ratably on an annual basis over the subsequent three years (in the case of Mr. Feenan and Mr. Pugh, 20% vesting on the first anniversary of the date of grant and the remaining portion vesting ratably on an annual basis over the following four years). For Mr. Pappas, 75% of incentive shares issued are subject to a time vesting with 25% vesting on the first anniversary of the Acquisition and the balance vesting ratably on a quarterly basis over the following three years. The remaining 50% of the incentive shares (25% for Mr. Pappas) are subject to both time vesting, in the same manner as previously described, as well as performance vesting subject to achieving certain targets based on various returns realized by our shareholders upon a change in control or the completion of this offering.

In 2013, Mr. Pappas entered into an amended and restated Executive Subscription Agreement in accordance with the terms of his amended Employment Agreement. Under the agreement Mr. Pappas was awarded additional Classes H though L of ordinary shares of our Parent (“New Securities”), subject to certain conditions. 100% of the New Securities are subject to time-based vesting condition with 40% vesting on June 30, 2014 and the remaining portion vesting on an annual basis over the subsequent three years. In determining the size of the New Securities awarded to Mr. Pappas, our Board took into account a number of factors including the size of the initial grant of incentive securities previously awarded to Mr. Pappas and the alignment of his compensation with the long-term interests of our shareholders.

All of the incentive shares are subject to the applicable executives remaining employed by us between the date of the applicable Executive Subscription Agreement and the applicable vesting date; provided that, if any of our NEOs (other than Mr. Pappas) dies, is terminated without cause or due to his disability, or resigns for good reason after the second anniversary of the date of grant, the portion of the incentive shares that are subject to time vesting that would have vested on the next regular vesting date will accelerate and vest on a pro rata basis based on the number of full months between the last regular vesting date and the termination date. If Mr. Pappas dies, is terminated without cause or due to his disability, or resigns for good reason, the portion of the incentive shares that are subject to time vesting that would have vested during the 12 months following the termination date will accelerate and vest.

Pursuant to the Executive Subscription Agreements, if our Parent makes distributions with respect to any co-invest shares or incentive shares prior to an executive’s securities becoming time vested or performance

 

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vested, our Parent will pay the executive, once such incentive shares become vested, a catch-up amount equal to an amount that the executive would have been entitled to receive in respect of any distribution by our Parent in connection with his or her incentive shares which are not vested had such incentive shares been vested on the date of such distribution, plus interest. For additional description of the Executive Subscription Agreements, see “Certain Relationships and Related Party Transactions.”

We use both time-based awards and performance-based awards to provide what we believe are appropriate incentives. Time-based awards help to retain executives, who must be employed by the Company at the time the award vests. Performance-based awards encourage our NEOs and other senior executives to maximize value creation for our shareholders.

In February 2011, in connection with the refinancing of our previous $800 million term loan under the Senior Secured Credit Facility, the Board declared a one-time cash distribution. The distribution was made by way of redemption and cancellation of the class A and class G shares. The NEOs, to the extent they held co-invest shares and incentive shares, received an equivalent payment in 2011. For those hired after June 17, 2010, a portion of the distribution attributable to unvested time-based incentive shares was withheld and put in escrow, to be paid out in connection with the anniversary of their date of hire, subject to the NEO’s continued employment with the Company. For those hired after June 17, 2010 but during 2010, 50% of the time-based incentive share distribution was paid in February 2011 and 50% was paid on their next anniversary date in 2012. For executives hired in 2011, 100% of the distribution was payable on their second anniversary date. For all holders of performance-based incentive shares redeemed and cancelled, a portion of the distribution was withheld and put in escrow, to be paid out at the time all performance-based conditions are met. There were no distributions for the year ended December 31, 2013.

Our Board and compensation committee believe that this treatment of holders of co-invest and incentive shares is fair and consistent with their status as equity participants in our Parent.