Equity research: The Mosaic Company

Part 2

The Mosaic Company: Why the phosphate and potash markets are global

The Mosaic Company (MOS) market overview: Phosphate

The following is a snapshot of global finished phosphate capacity by company:

Global Finished Phosphate Capacity by CompanyEnlarge Graph

The phosphate market is a global market, with developing countries (specifically China and India) becoming a much larger part of the demand pie. Most market experts expect long-term phosphate demand to trend at a 2.5% to 3.0% global growth rate.

World Processed Phosphate ShipmentsEnlarge Graph

MOS management outlines a number phosphate market facts, some specific to MOS and others relating to the phosphate market as a whole. The following are, at a high level, the main talking points when it comes to MOS and the phosphate industry:

  • Sedimentary and igneous formations
  • Large economically viable reserves: North Africa, Western China, Central Florida, and Russia
  • Largest producer of concentrated phosphate crop nutrients accounting for 12% of global output
  • Over 35 years of rock reserves
  • Low-cost manufacturer
  • Premium products
  • Global distribution facilities
  • JV (joint venture) in Peru and announced Saudi Arabia JV


The following is a snapshot of global potash production by company:

Global Potash Production by CompanyEnlarge Graph

The potash market is as well a global market, with developing countries becoming a much larger part of the demand pie. However, because potash implementation on agriculture land can be “skipped” every now and again, it can be a discretionary nutrient for farmers during cost-conscious times (such as 2009). Most market experts expect long-term potash demand to trend at a 2.5% to 3.5% global growth rate.

World Muriate of Potash ShipmentsEnlarge Graph

MOS management’s potash market facts are as follows:

  • Obtained through underground or solution mining
  • 80% of reserved in Canada and Russia
  • Over a century of reserves
  • 10.7 million tonnes of operational capacity
  • One of the largest potash producers in the world
  • Potash expansion plants:
    • $3 billion in capital, 3 million tonnes
    • On time, on scope, on budget
    • Delaying future 2 million tonne projects

The Market Realist Take

Mosaic announced on October 2 that the North American phosphate export association PhosChem has been disbanded. The association handled the US exports of phosphate for Potash Corp of Saskatchewan (POT) and Mosaic (MOS). MOS had represented over 90% of the PhosChem volumes and noted that PhosChem didn’t own any hard assets like Canpotex, so the decision to disband made sense.

The Realist Discussions