SK Innovation said no Friday that it posted 29 billion won in operating loss for the third quarter of 2020.
It is the company’s third consecutive quarters of loss __ South Korean analysts expected a return to profit for the quarter.
The energy company posted sales of 8.41 trillion won, however, an increase of 16.9% from the previous quarter.
Operating loss was also narrower compared to the previous quarter’s 410.7 billion won.
The global petrochemical and chemical remained weak for the quarter, SK Innovation said, but oil prices rose in the quarter which allowed it to increase profitability from its inventory.
The company’s petroleum business turned a profit at 38.6 billion won in operating profit.
The chemical business saw an operating loss of 53.2 billion won, however, due to the weak aromatic market.
SK Innovation’s battery business posted 486 billion won in sales, 2.5 times higher than the 189.9 billion won of the same time period a year ago.
Its new factories in China and Hungary began operations which led to increased shipment, the company said.
This also allowed it to narrow the business’ operating loss by 14.9 billion won to 98.9 billion won.
Another factory in China that will began operations in the first quarter of 2021 will improve the battery business; performance substantially next year, SK Innovation said.
Its material business saw an operating profit of 29.9 billion won. SK Innovation is aggressively expanding its battery separator business __ it is aiming for a capacity of 1.87 billion meter-square by 2023.