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MOL Group upgrades 2019 guidance after robust Q3 results

  • Full-year 2019 EBITDA guidance raised while capex guidance is unchanged
  • Simplified free cash flow remained positive both in Q3 and year to date, despite organic capex nearly doubling year on year as the company pushes forward with strategic transformational projects
  • Consumer Services EBITDA rose by 15% in local currency terms and by 10% in USD

Budapest, 31 October 2019 – Today, MOL Group announced its financial results for the third quarter of 2019. Despite a weaker macro environment and much lower oil and gas prices, strong Q3 EBITDA allows MOL Group to raise 2019 full year guidance to „around USD 2.4 bn” from „around USD 2.3 bn.

Upstream EBITDA declined to USD 235mn in Q3, reflecting lower oil and significantly lower gas prices. The volume of hydrocarbon production slightly decreased by 1 % year-on-year in Q3 and stood at 107,500 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd), but year to date production of 112 thousand boepd remains above the full-year guidance.

Downstream segment’s Clean CCS EBITDA improved by 4 % to 272mn USD in the third quarter, as refinery margins rebounded from the H1 decrease. Motor fuel demand continued to expand by 3% in the relevant CEE region and supported the downstrem results. MOL’s biggest ever organic investment, polyol plant construction site works boosted up in Q3 and progresses as scheduled.

Consumer Services reached new all-time high quarterly result at USD 161mn, up by 10% year-on-year.  MOL’s flagship Fresh Corner branded non-fuel concept rollout dynamically continues across the network, the number of reconstructed sites with Fresh Corners rose to 794 from 615 a year ago.

The Gas Midstream segment reached USD 27mn EBITDA in Q3, 8% higher than a year ago.

Chairman-CEO Zsolt Hernádi commented the results: “The strong financial delivery of our resilient, integrated business model in the first 9 months allows us to upgrade our full-year 2019 Clean CCS EBITDA guidance to around USD 2.4bn (from around USD 2.3bn). We also continue to generate positive simplified free cash flow, thus fully funding even the nearly doubling organic investments, as we push forward with our strategic transformational projects. The flagship polyol plant remains on track and on schedule, with major construction site works boosted up in Q3 and overall completion now exceeding 35%.”

The foundation stone for polyol complex – MOL’s 1,2 billion EUR petrochemical investment - has been laid in Tiszaújváros

  • The polyol complex is expected to be commissioned in 2021 and will create 200 jobs in the operating period.
  • With a budget of EUR 1.2 billion, also supported by the Hungarian government through tax allowances and an investment grant, this project is MOL's largest ever organic investment.
  • The plant will feature state-of-the-art technology and will be built by Germany’s thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions

Tiszaújváros, 27 September 2019 – The foundation stone for the Tiszaújváros polyol plant has been laid. The plant is expected to be commissioned in 2021. MOL will invest EUR 1.2 billion to construct the plant which will be able to produce around 200,000 tons of polyols per year.

Zsolt Hernádi, Chairman and C-CEO of MOL Group, Dr. Sami Pelkonen, CEO Chemical & Process Technologies at thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions, Ferenc Koncz, Member of the Hungarian Parliament and Mihály Varga, Finance Minister, took part at the foundation stone laying ceremony.  MOL Petrochemicals in Tiszaújváros will be the only company in Hungary and the entire Central and Eastern European region with an integrated value chain from crude oil extraction to the production of polyether polyols (widely used raw materials in plastics). The polyol project will provide long-term employment opportunity for 200 people.

Expected to start production in 2021, the plant is the largest organic investment project in MOL’s history, with a total budget of EUR 1.2 billion including the investment aid of the Hungarian government of EUR 131 million (a combination of corporate tax allowance and cash investment grant). According to MOL’s estimates, the plant will contribute approximately EUR 150 million per annum to MOL Group’s financial results (EBITDA). Polyol is an important and highly sought-after plastic raw material that is used in numerous industries, from automotive manufacturing to construction to the clothing industry. The Tiszaújváros complex will produce polyol using efficient and environmentally friendly technologies such as the HPPO process (propylene oxide from hydrogen peroxide) developed by thyssenkrupp and Evonik.

“This investment project will make MOL Group one of the most important players in the region’s chemical industry, with MOL being the only Central and Eastern European company to control the entire value chain from crude oil extraction to polyol production,” said Zsolt Hernádi. - "Once commissioned in 2021, the plant will further enhance the position of Tiszaújváros in the chemical industry, as the expertise and the new production infrastructure established here may attract additional investors to the area."

“Today marks an important step for the transformation of the chemical industry in Hungary as well as for the cooperation between MOL and thyssenkrupp,” said Dr. Sami Pelkonen. ”With its Vision 2030, MOL is pursuing an ambitious growth agenda. We are proud and sustainably committed to support this vision and to contribute with our technologies and know-how to an innovative and sustainable chemical sector.”

One of the cornerstones of MOL Group 2030 - Enter Tomorrow strategy is to expand the company’s petrochemicals value chain and produce more valuable products. The polyol plant and the previously opened synthetic rubber plant are the milestones of this strategy. The synthetic rubber plant of MOL Group and the Japanese JSR Corporation produces 60,000 tons of solution polymerization styrene-butadiene rubber (S-SBR), a highly sought after chemical product globally. The most important feedstock of S-SBR is butadiene, which is produced by MOL at an adjacent plant commissioned in 2015.

MOL Slovenija amongst the best business entities in Slovenia

MOL Slovenia has reached the highest credit assessment rate of excellency AAA for the third time in a row. Therefore, it now also qualifies as a company with the Golden Creditworthiness.

Bisnode analysis company is the biggest partnership company of the Dun & Bradstreet rating Company. In the context of an international project, it focuses on the financial analysis of companies and it has a long tradition of granting certificates of excellency in 19 European countries, amongst which Slovenia can also be found. Excellency rating represents the above average value of economic entities. It is based on company accounts of the entities which are being presented for the past year, but they also predict the operation in the next 12 months. The excellency rating is given only to the best companies with the key differential advantage in operating.

According to the 2018 analysis, MOL SLOVENIA is amongst 9,6% of the best Slovene companies and it therefore classifies as a AAA rated company. Only 12.214 companies (6,9%) of the 176.466 registered in 2018 in Slovenia have accomplished the Golden Creditworthiness. This year, for the fifth time ever, Bisnode has extracted the companies with the Golden Creditworthiness – this kind of the highest assessment is given only to the companies, which have reached the highest credit assessment rate (AAA) for the third time in a row.

The Golden Creditworthiness is an assessment of a company through a longer period, based on several criteria. The integral part of the assessment is the company’s solvency, creditworthiness, overall indebtedness, profitability and other risk criteria. The company awarded with the Golden Creditworthiness represents the most reliable and credible type of low risk company to cooperate with, for all types of partners: suppliers, buyers, insurances, banks and other business partners.

“To be a reliable partner to our suppliers, buyers and other business partners, is one of the fundamental guidelines of our financial management. I am proud our effort has been awarded for the third time in a row with the AAA class certificate and we have also received the Golden Creditworthiness.” - says mag. Jasmina Gregorn, financial director at MOL Slovenia. 


MOL Group Looks For Top Graduates To Apply For Its Growww 2019 Program

Today, MOL Group announced a call for applications for the next edition of its award-winning talent acquisition program, Growww 2019, which offers fresh graduates a unique opportunity to kick-start their career in one of the largest corporations in Central Eastern Europe. Through the program MOL aims to develop a new generation of industry experts, offering them an opportunity to learn and solve real-life business challenges while working in one of the most complex industries.

MOL Group opens over 140 positions in the areas of engineering, business, IT as well as social and natural sciences. Candidates with up to one year working experience can apply for positions both at the Headquarters in Budapest and in MOL Group’s local subsidiaries in ten countries: Austria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Norway, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia.

This intensive one-year program offers a possibility to gain insight into the operations of MOL Group across all business and functional areas. On top of the on-the-job learning and visits to various MOL’s industrial sites, young professionals have a possibility to gain industry-specific knowledge through structured business education program, which is also an excellent opportunity to network with company’s top executives and make professional relationships. Each participant is supported by a mentor who provides professional guidance and feedback as well as helps adapt to a dynamic, multicultural working environment.

“Since the 2007 launch of the Growww program, we are receiving year on year over six thousand applications; we hired over two thousand Growwwers, at the same time maintaining a strong, 80% retention rate. For me personally, this continuous popularity of our flagship talent acquisition program is another proof that MOL is one of the most attractive employers in the CEE region. As a global company, we give young people the freedom to think big and the capability to bring these ideas to life. Since we embarked on our strategic business transformation, I believe that nurturing this innovative spirit is more important than ever to future-proof our company for the years to come.” – said Zdravka Demeter Bubalo, HR Vice President at MOL Group.

Over the last decade the Growww program has gained wide international recognition and became a real industry trademark, with the best-in-class retention rate of almost 80%. At the same time, the female representation among those hired reached 40% last year, well above the Oil & Gas industry average.

For more information about Growww 2019, please visit: molgroup.info/growww

MOL and Total joined forces to extend their fuel cards acceptance network in Europe

MOL and Total signed an agreement which will make travelling across Europe easier for their corporate customers. The agreement provides for acceptance of MOL Group Cards by Total in its network of stations in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, The Netherlands and Germany. At the same time, the Total fuel cards will be accepted in the MOL’s and Slovnaft’s network of stations in Hungary, Romania, Slovenia and Slovakia.

As a first step, starting from February 2019, Total fuel cards are accepted in MOL’s network in Hungary and Romania. MOL Group Cards’ owners are able to benefit in return from the acceptance of their cards in Total network in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, The Netherlands and Germany. The roll-out of Total card acceptance to MOL Slovenia and Slovnaft’s network in Slovakia will be finalized over the next months.

As a result of this agreement, MOL Group Cards will be accepted in nearly 7,000 stations in Europe. At the same time, the Total card will be accepted in more than 17,000 points of sales.

“Opening the possibility to use our fuel cards in Western Europe is an important milestone, which will not only help us grow our business, but will also contribute to one of the key objectives of MOL Group 2030 strategy: to become the first choice of our customers.” - commented Zsolt Pethő, Group Downstream Commerce & Optimization Senior Vice President at MOL Group.

 “This agreement strengthens our position in Eastern Europe and completes perfectly our offer. It represents yet another step towards consolidating our strong position on the fuel cards in Europe. Finally, it contributes to one of the Total’s key objectives: to support our customers in their energy choices and to be the partner of their mobility.” - declares Benoît Luc, Total Marketing & Services, Senior Vice President for Europe.

MOL Group announced winners of the 12th edition of MOL Group’s Freshhh competition

Last week, MOL Group held in Hungary Live Final of the 12th edition of the Freshhh competition, its flagship award-winning student contest. Its popularity demonstrates that MOL is considered an attractive employer among the youngest, largely digital generation, and is able to offer compelling career paths also outside the core Oil & Gas industry. The best six international teams - from Croatia, France, the Netherlands and Poland – competed for final prizes, with the French “Road to Buda” and the Dutch “Snelle Planga” teams coming out on top after a challenging battle.

Freshhh is an international online student competition, where participants take charge of managing an integrated oil corporation. Throughout the game, teams consisting of three members have to make day-to-day decisions on oil and gas field development projects, the construction of a refinery, retail network development as well as defining the best product portfolio.

The latest edition attracted applicants from over 70 countries around the world. In total, more than 1,000 teams applied to participate in the Freshhh 2018 competition, which proves that it has truly become a trademark in the industry on the international level. Two rounds of the virtual game were followed by the Live Final, where the participants had an opportunity to assess key pillars of MOL Group 2030 strategy, outlining solutions to potential challenges in each business segment and presenting their ideas on how to attract young talents to the oil & gas industry. Finally, the student teams participated in a challenging debate, which was an opportunity to demonstrate their teamwork, negotiation and public speaking skills.

All teams showed excellent performance, but according to the jury comprising of top MOL managers the French “Road to Buda” and the Dutch “Snelle Planga” teams proved to be the best. The third place went to the French “The Oil’believable” team and a special award to the Croatian “Godot” team. The top three teams won prizes of a total of 25,000 EUR.

“Popularity of the latest edition of Freshhh competition proves once again that MOL grasped the fundamentals of engaging digital natives. I am pleased to see that thanks to our talent acquisition programs young people see MOL as a vibrant and rewarding workplace, which can offer impactful career paths. We continuously rethink and reinvent our programs to stay attractive for new generations, whose fresh and innovative energy is essential for the implementation of our transformational strategy, MOL 2030.” - said Zdravka Demeter Bubalo, HR Vice President of MOL Group.

Since 2007, MOL hired over 120 participants of the Freshhh competition, with many of them being promoted to high-level expert and managerial roles.

Last year’s winners joined MOL as Junior Engineers as part of the so-called Engineer Academy program, and currently work on MOL’s flagship chemical investment. Emánuel Kovács, who was part of the team, commented: “After we won the Freshhh competition, things happened very fast. Last year, our whole team joined MOL as part of the so-called Engineer Academy and we started to work on the company’s largest investment. The Polyol Project is one of the cornerstones of MOL’s petrochemical expansion, the key pillar of MOL 2030 strategy, so it’s really exciting to be involved hands-on in the company’s transformation.”


Read more about Freshhh and Growww.

Welcome to Kranj where new MOL service station is awaiting you

On Thursday, 20/9/2018, in Kranj, MOL Slovenija opened its 47th MOL service station in Slovenia and first one in Gorenjska region.

Service station in Kranj is an important milestone for the company and it is in line with company´s strategy to expand the retail network in regions where MOL was not presented so far. Beside Fresh Corner with its rich offer for customers and nice atmosphere, MOL SeS Kranj offers its customers quality EVO fuels, car wash, LPG and fast EV charger.

New MOL service station welcomed its first guests with official opening ceremony hosted by Valerija Glavač, MOL Slovenija CEO. Guests had been welcomed as well by the major deputy of Kranj Municipality. The event was prepared with a thought on local community.  As a social responsible company which appreciates the meaning of local organizations for the development of local communities, MOL Slovenija provided donation to Fire fighters organization. Beside firefighters, donations had provided as well to the Kranj kindergarten and music school, which enriched the opening ceremony and delight the visitors with their singing, dancing and playing the traditional Slovenian folk music.

MOL Slovenija in the highest class of credit worthiness for second year in a row

In 2018 MOL Slovenija again received above average creditworthiness rating certificate by Bisnode, biggest strategic partner of Dun & Bradstreet, global provider of business information for more than 265 million businesses in 240 countries.

The assessment of the credit rating excellence by the credit rating agency is based on different criteria for assessing the company's credit rating over a longer period of time and the present period. Thus, the criteria include payment and creditworthiness, indebtedness, profitability and other criteria of business risk with the company. The highest rating of credit excellence thus represents the most reliable, credible and low-risk company for cooperation with business partners - suppliers, customers, insurance companies, banks and other business partners.

Among more than 171 thousand of registered companies in Slovenia, only 15.749 companies achieved high credit worthiness. Credit worthiness is confirmation of the company's achievements and assurance to customers and business partners of the success, credibility and reliability of the company, thus we are very proud that MOL Slovenija ranks among 9.2% of the most reliable business entities in Slovenia.

MOL Group launches car sharing service in Budapest

  • The “MOL Limo” car sharing offers initially a fleet of 300 Volkswagen up! cars (with a third EV)
  • The entire car sharing system is owned and operated by MOL
  • MOL Group is the leading provider of mobility solutions in Budapest with its car and bike sharing services
  • Mobility transformation based on traditional retail plays an important role in MOL Group’s 2030 strategy

Budapest, 25 January 2017 – Today, MOL unveiled its new car sharing service MOL Limo, a true reflection of MOL Group’s ambition to become the first choice of customers and a pioneer in mobility solutions in Central Eastern Europe. As part of its 2030 strategy, MOL aims to adapt to changing market dynamics and transform its traditional fuel retailing into a broader consumer goods and services business.

”Mobility represents an important direction in MOL Group’s 2030 strategy. We aim to transform our retail operations by tapping into growing areas of consumer demand and take part in the reinvention of transportation in CEE. We want to be the first choice of customers and provide them all the products and services they need on the road and make their journey as convenient as possible. Offering car sharing services, which will play a crucial role in the transportation mix of big cities, fits into this strategy perfectly.” – said Peter Ratatics, COO, Consumer Services, MOL Group.

MOL Limo provides a flexible solution, which allows users to leave their car at the destination of their choice, and works hand-in-hand with public transport or even with bike sharing. Through its car and bike sharing schemes, the latter was launched three years ago, MOL is the leading provider of mobility solutions for city dwellers of the Hungarian capital.

MOL’s long-term goal is to extend the network in Budapest and beyond and eventually operate a fully electric fleet, in line with the development of EV infrastructure in Hungary and the CEE region. Changes in consumer patterns such as the decreasing importance of car ownership along with increasing environmental consciousness are expected to result in increasing demand for car sharing services, which can significantly improve air quality and traffic congestion in big cities.

Read more about MOL Limo car sharing and MOL Bubi bike sharing.

Traditional fire drill in MOL Slovenija

Another autumn arrived and once again, blue flashing lights are announcing this year’s fire drill which was held at MOL’s service station Radvanje based on initiative of voluntary firefighting brigade PGD Radvanje and in collaboration with volunteer firefighting brigades Pekre, Razvanje, Fire brigade, Police directorate of Maribor, Rescue station Maribor and assessment group of the Firefighter Association of Slovenia.

Safety is our value which we pay a great deal of attention in MOL Slovenija. Safety first is not just a slogan; safety first for us is a rule and value which we are striving to follow in our everyday business. We consider rising of awareness about meaning of safety, safe execution of tasks and constant following of safety rules, as most important keys for safety in a company. Thus each year our company organizes as well a fire drill at one of our service station. This year´s drill was held on 7.9.2017 at the service station MOL Radvanje in Maribor and was initiated by voluntary fire fighters brigade PGD Radvanje. We highlighted the potential threats that can occur at service stations and the fact that security is not self-evident, but it is a process that needs to be nurtured and properly maintained.

Although there is no need to emphasize the importance of the firefighters, it is worthwhile praising all firefighters who by extinguishing fires and collaboration in interventions, are risking their lives. We are honored to be collaborating with such heroes for many years. Thereby taking the opportunity, we gladly handed over the donation to the firefighters from PGD Radvanje.

Dear firefighters, we thank you for your courage, kindness and readiness to help people in various dangerous circumstances.

MOL Slovenija