What happened

Shares of Olin (NYSE:OLN) rose 10% in September, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence, mostly after announcing in the middle of the month that it would be partially redeeming $600 million worth of senior notes it had outstanding that were issued back in 2015 when it acquired Dow's (NYSE:DOW) chlorine products business.

So what

The $5 billion acquisition made Olin the world's largest chlor-alkali producer, a group of key industrial chemicals such as industrial bleach and caustic soda that are made through the production of chlorine.

Hand holding Erlenmeyer flask of liquid

Image source: Getty Images.

The business, though, along with its epoxy segment, have seen sales decline this year due to the economic turmoil brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. Olin ended up refinancing a number of its high-cost bonds related to the acquisition, which will reduce interest expense by $30 million. The note redemption will reduce interest expenses by another $40 million.

Now what

Olin started September with a new CEO taking the reins as Scott Sutton assumed his duties following the retirement of his predecessor John Fischer. 

Although the chlor-alkali and epoxy businesses have weakened this year, Olin's ammunition business continues to exhibit strength amid the biggest boom the firearms industry has ever seen.

There's no sign it will let up either, and Olin just won a seven-year contract with the U.S. Army to take full control of its Silver Lake ammo facility, a deal that makes Olin the world's biggest small caliber ammo manufacturer.

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