Oman Oil Company’s Oxea secures key ratings upgrade

German-headquartered global chemicals company Oxea, a wholly owned subsidiary of Oman Oil Company (OOC) — the Omani government’s energy investment vehicle — has received an upgrade of its Corporate Family Rating (CFR) by international rating agency Moody’s to B2 from B3.
Oxea, which is based in the German city of Monheim Am Rhein, is a global manufacturer of oxo intermediates and oxo derivatives, such as alcohols, polyols, carboxylic acids, specialty esters, and amines. These products are used for the production of high-quality coatings, lubricants, cosmetics and pharmaceutical products, flavourings and fragrances, printing inks and plastics.
Moody’s also upgraded the rating of Oxea’s EUR 475 million and $500 million senior secured term loans to B2 from B3. The outlook on all ratings was described as stable.
“The upgrade reflects Oxea’s better than expected operating performance over the past twelve months, including safely completing the turnaround at the plant in Oberhausen, Germany,” said Oxea in a statement.
“Moody’s decision was also supported by Oxea’s leading market position as a global merchant producer of oxo chemicals with a track record of maintaining and growing its market share across a diverse product line. Moody’s cited a good liquidity profile and a strong shareholder as additional factors contributing to the rating increase,” it noted.
Stefan Schmidt, Oxea’s Chief Financial Officer, commented: “We are pleased that in recognition of Oxea’s sustained strong performance, Moody’s has upgraded our credit ratings to B2. It acknowledges the significant deleveraging over the past two years and the success of our selective growth strategy driven by our CEO Dr Salim al Huthaili. This further encourages us to continue to invest in the expansion of our global capacities to support the attractive market growth for oxo derivatives.”
Oxea was acquired by Oman Oil Company in December 2013, a move that effectively catapulted Muscat-based OOC into the ranks of the world’s top chemicals producers. Oxea operates a global network of plants offering a total production capacity of over 1.3 million tonnes per annum of oxo intermediates and oxo derivatives.
Oman Oil Company’s longer-term vision behind the acquisition of Oxea is to utilise the chemical giant’s platform to expand its chemicals portfolio and evolve into one of the world’s leading chemicals companies. It seeks to achieve this by leveraging its geographical proximity to competitive raw materials in the region, as well as its location as a gateway to the emerging markets of Asia.