Neste Oil's operating environment remained favorable during the first quarter of 2005, driven by the continued strong oil market, which had a positive impact on the prices of refined petroleum products as well as refining margins. Additionally, the lower price of heavier, sourer crude oils compared to lighter, sweet crude oils continued to benefit Neste Oil.
This first interim report by Neste Oil has been prepared according to International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).
* Neste Oil Corporation was demerged from Fortum Corporation
* Neste Oil's shares were first quoted on the Helsinki Stock Exchange on 18 April 2005
* The Diesel Project at the Porvoo refinery continued as planned. Construction of a biodiesel plant was started
* Operating profit of EUR 146 million (carve-out Q1/04: 146 million)
* Net cash from operating activities of EUR 154 million (carve-out Q1/04: 114 million)
* Earnings per share of EUR 0.40 (carve-out Q1/04: 0.44)
"The first months of 2005 have been very advantageous to oil refiners capable of producing high-quality sulfur-free products from heavy and sour crude oils. Neste Oil's sophisticated refineries enjoy the benefits of this situation, and our first-quarter result was in line with our expectations. Together with our clearly articulated strategy of concentrating on petroleum products for cleaner traffic, this has led to great interest in the company among potential shareholders. The IPO was substantially over-subscribed, and Neste Oil now has 57,500 shareholders," Neste Oil's President & CEO Risto Rinne said.
News conference and conference call
A press conference on the first-quarter results for 2005 will be held in Finnish today, 3 May 2005, at 12:30 pm Eastern European time at the Neste Oil Auditorium, Keilaranta 8, Espoo. The company website www.nesteoil.com contains presentation materials also in English.
A conference call for investors and analysts will be held today, 3 May 2005, at 3.00 pm Eastern European time. The call-in numbers are as follows: UK: +44(0)20 7162 0188, US: +1 334 323 6203. Use the password: Neste Oil. An instant replay of the call will be available until 10 May 2005. Numbers for the instant replay are +44(0)20 7031 4064 for the UK and +1 954 334 0342 for the US, using access code 658357.