The enlarged Buzzi Unicem increased cement sales by 2.3% in the first six month of the year to just over 15Mt while ready-mixed concrete deliveries were 2.8% higher at 7.3Mm3. The underlying turnover rose by 4.7% to €1,313.5m and the EBITDA was 5.5% higher at EUR310.3m on the same basis. During the period, the group spent €80.6m on capital expenditure and a further EUR129.7m on financial investments, principally on increasing the stake in Dyckerhoff. Net debt at the end of June stood at €1,251.9m to give a gearing level of 68.2%.
Buzzi Unicem’s Italian turnover rose by 0.3% to EUR481.8m but the EBITDA declined by 5.4% to EUR127.4m because of higher costs and pressure on cement prices during the period. Cement deliveries rose by 3.7% and selling prices fell during the first quarter but have since recovered to the level seen the same time last year. Ready-mixed concrete volumes were 3.0% lower at 3.9Mm3, largely because of lower deliveries to the Turin to Milan high speed railway line. Since the end of June, revenue has been improving, allowing the cost increases to be at least partially offset, suggesting that the full year results ought to be able to broadly match last year’s profit.
In Germany, turnover rose by 2.3% to EUR228.98m on a comparative basis and the EBITDA rose from EUR13.4m to EUR23.4m as prices begun to recover and overheads were down. Cement volumes declined by 6.4% but ready-mixed concrete deliveries rose by 6.6% to 1.4Mm3. Luxembourg contributed a turnover 10.9% higher at EUR68.0m, with the EBITDA advancing by 62.9% to EUR14.5m, with cement deliveries ahead by 4.3% and prices up on the same period last year.