Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. (APD - Free Report) has inked an agreement with Saudi Aramco to jointly construct the first hydrogen fuel cell vehicle fueling station in Saudi Arabia.
The deal will combine Air Products’ experience and technological knowhow in the field of hydrogen with Saudi Aramco's facilities, industrial experience along with R&D capabilities. The companies will launch a pilot fleet of fuel cell vehicles for which high-purity compressed hydrogen will be distributed at the new fueling station.
Air Products will supply the vehicles with compressed hydrogen leveraging its proprietary SmartFuel hydrogen fueling technology. The data collected during the pilot phase of the project is likely to provide valuable information regarding the assessment of future applications for emerging transport technology. Notably, the hydrogen refueling station is slated to be operational in the second quarter of 2019 in the Kingdom.
Moreover, the hydrogen refueling station will be located at Air Products' Technology Center in the Dhahran Techno Valley Science Park. Toyota Motor Corporation (TM - Free Report) will supply Toyota Mirai Fuel Cell Vehicles, which will be used for testing in the pilot project. The Mirai is a zero-emission vehicle that operates on compressed hydrogen gas and emits only water. The car runs on fuel cell, which creates electricity by combining oxygen from air with hydrogen from the fuel tank.
Air Products’ shares have lost 3.5% in the past year compared with the industry’s decline of 23.8%.
The company has logged profit from continuing operations of $347.5 million or $1.57 per share in first-quarter fiscal 2019 (ended Dec 31, 2018), a more than two-fold jump from $155.6 million or 70 cents in the year-ago quarter. Adjusted earnings per share (EPS) were $1.86 for the quarter, up 4% from the year-ago quarter’s tally of $1.79. However, the figure trailed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.87.
Air Products continues to expect adjusted EPS for fiscal 2019 in the range of $8.05-$8.30, reflecting a 10% increase at the midpoint year over year. The company expects adjusted EPS in the band of $1.80-$1.90 per share for second-quarter fiscal 2019, up 8% at the midpoint year over year. It also continues to anticipate capital expenditure of $2.3-$2.5 billion for fiscal 2019.
Zacks Rank & Key Picks
Air Products currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
A few better-ranked stocks in the basic materials space include Ingevity Corporation (NGVT - Free Report) and The Mosaic Company (MOS - Free Report) . While Ingevity sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Mosaic carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Ingevity has an expected earnings growth rate of 21.5% for 2019. The company’s shares have gained 22.8% in the past year.
Mosaic has an expected earnings growth rate of 24% for 2019. Its shares have moved up 15.1% in a year’s time.
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