(DD) E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company and Fiber-Line Join Forces

Chemical and industrial products behemoth E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company (DD) has joined Fiber-Line Inc. to offer new protective solutions in an effort to improve global connectivity. Fiber-Line makes high-performance fibers and specialty coatings for a host of industries.

Under the collaboration, Fiber-Line has unveiled a range of cable components for broadband communications and above-ground installations leveraging the strength, flexibility and lightweight protection of DuPont’s innovative Kevlar fibers. Powered by its proprietary Swellcoat technology, Fiber-Line’s new solutions will eliminate water penetration, thereby ensuring uninterrupted, reliable communication flow.

The partnership builds on a long-standing relationship between the companies. Fiber-Line’s products for above-ground cables are made with the Kevlar AP next-generation fibers, which provide 15% more strength and 15% less stretch to the cable.

Fiber optic cables, used primarily for broadband and other telecom applications, represent more than half of the Kevlar fibers used by Fiber-Line. According to Fiber-Line, the fiber optic cable industry is growing more than 30% annually in major growth markets such as Russia, Latin America and China.

DuPont continues to explore new opportunities in new and existing markets. Moreover, it remains committed to providing differentiated and innovative products to its customers thereby increasing its geographic footprint.

On April 19, the company reported mixed first-quarter 2012 results. Earnings of $1.61 per share exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.55. Revenues jumped 12% year over year to $11,230 million, yet missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate. The Danisco acquisition, along with strong agriculture sales, boosted earnings in the quarter.

DuPont remains on track to achieve its fixed cost productivity targets of $1 billion by 2012. However, higher raw material, energy and freight costs remain a concern. The company is also subject to currency headwinds as it deals with international markets.

DuPont, which competes with The Dow Chemical Company (DOW) and BASF SE (BASFY), maintains a short-term Zacks #3 Rank (Hold). We currently have a long-term Neutral recommendation on the stock.

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