The ratings reflect Houghton International Inc.'s limited business diversity, exposure to cyclical end markets and volatile raw-material costs, and highly competitive industry dynamics that result in weak profit margins. Partially offsetting these weaknesses are the company's good geographic diversity and stable market position in the niche metalworking and chemicals management service markets. With annual revenues of about $432 million, Houghton operates in two business segments -- metalworking (70% of sales) and fluidcare (30% of sales). The metalworking segment provides specialty chemical fluids applied in metal processing operations. These products are used in a number of industries –- including automotive, aerospace, and construction –- and provide favorable characteristics such as lubrication, rust prevention, heat dissipation, and bacterial growth control in certain...
Companies mentioned in this report are:
- Houghton International Inc.
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