Buzzi Unicem’s quoted subsidiary Dyckerhoff saw first half turnover decline by 21.7% to €202m and the EBITDA turned negative to the tune of €10m compared with a €6m profit last year. Much of this deterioration can be put down a yet harder winter across northern Europe and also in the USA, on top of which many economies remain weak. Cement shipments declined by 20.0% to 1.90m tonnes, with lower volumes in all countries. The smallest reductions were seen in Luxembourg with a 2.2% reduction and in Russia, where volumes declined by 7.5%. The worst performance came from the Ukraine with a 41.5% drop in volume. Group aggregates deliveries were off by 9.6% at 0.74Mt, while the ready-mixed concrete volume fell by 22.1% to 0.86Mm³.
The German turnover fell by 18.8% to €82m, while the EBITDA was unchanged at €3m. Cement shipments declined by 17.0% to 0.73Mt, with exports to neighbouring markets also suffering and domestic deliveries being down by some 19%. Cement prices suffered some modest erosion and were off by 1%, while ready-mixed concrete prices declined by 11% and volumes 10.9% to 0.43Mm³.
In Poland, turnover fell by 33.3% to €12m and there was a €1m loss at the EBITDA level. Cement deliveries fell by 22.7% to 0.13Mt and prices were off by almost 7%, in a worse winter than the previous year. Czech cement shipments fell by 32.1% to 0.08Mt and prices were off by almost 6%.
The Ukrainian turnover fell by 41.7% to €7 though the EBITDA loss was reduced from €5m to €2m. Cement deliveries dropped by 41.9% to 0.12Mt, but the commissioning of coal mills this month should make the business more competitive.
The US associate, majority-owned by Buzzi Unicem, contributed a turnover 32.6% lower at €29m and a €6m loss was incurred at the EBITDA level. Under the combination of an unusually cold winter and the recession, cement shipments fell by 24.8% to 0.38Mt. While Dyckerhoff is expecting improvement in cement shipments this year, the weaker prices suggest that the turnover may not increase.