A. Schulman just wrapped up a 2011 fiscal year in which its sales grew more than 27% to almost $2.2bn. “We are pleased that we achieved strong results for fiscal 2011, as margins improved across all of our businesses during the fourth quarter,” Schulman Chairman, President and CEO Joseph Gingo said in a news release. “We are also seeing the positive results of the aggressive and decisive actions we have taken to mitigate the effects of the weakening global economic environment.” But the firm’s profits for the year ended 31 August fell more than 5% to just under $42m. Officials with the Fairlawn-based maker of compounds and concentrates chalked up the decline to special charges related to a dispute settlement and a change in the way the company calculates inventory reserves. Those items reduced Schulman’s profit by almost $6m, officials said in a news release.