Titan’s turnover rose by 16.8% to EUR1568m in 2006 and the operating profit at the EBITDA level improved by 23.7% to EUR481m.
Cement deliveries in 2006 rose by 4.6% to 16.1m tonnes, while aggregates shipments advanced by 9.3% to 22.4m tonnes and ready-mixed concrete volume by around 8% to 6Mm³. Net debt at the end of the year was 20.5% lower at EUR327m to give a gearing level of 30.3%. Capital expenditure amounted to €235.9m.
The Greek operations increased turnover by 15.3% to EUR607.0m and the EBITDA rose by 15.2% to EUR190.9m. The effect of higher energy costs was largely offset by increased domestic deliveries on the back of a buoyant housebuilding market. As a result, cement exports were reduced and, in a tight market, export prices rose by more than 20%. Ready-mixed concrete and aggregates shipments showed a good advance over the previous year, partially helped by minor acquisitions in the ready-mixed concrete field. South eastern Europe contributed the strongest performance in the group, with turnover rising by 18.2% to €186.8m and the EBITDA adding 29.7% to EUR73.0m. This was primarily on the back of strong demand in Bulgaria, where cement and clinker had to be imported. Titan has started developing downstream interests in Bulgaria by acquiring a 49% stake in two quarries. The new kiln at Zlatna Panega was commissioned early this year and should allow considerable cost savings. The subsidiary in Macedonia had a very good year and volumes also improved in Serbia. The group is still awaiting the necessary planning permits to start building a cement works in Albania.