Saudi Arabian Fertilizer Company

Saudi Fertiliser Company, the first petrochemical company in Saudi Arabia, has come a long way since its establishment in 1965.

The Dammam-based firm runs a fertiliser manufacturing operation that produces chemicals including ammonia, urea, sulfuric acid and melamine, a product used to make gum and paint.

The fertiliser maker is 42 percent owned by Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC), one of the world’s leading manufacturers of chemicals, fertilisers and metals and the largest listed Arab company by market value.

SAFCO posted a 27.4 percent drop in net profit for the first quarter amid lower prices for its products. Net profit fell to $140m from $192.8m in the first quarter of 2008, beating analyst estimates.

SAFCO is one of the world’s largest producers of urea and ammonia with an annual production capacity of urea over 2.6 million tonnes per annum (tpa) and 2.3 million tpa of ammonia.

Last year ammonia was trading at around $500 per tonne compared with around $230 a tonne in 2009, while urea was trading at around $400 a tonne compared with $300 a tonne.

The company also produces sulphuric acid and melamine.