Mexican cement company Grupo Cementos Chihuahua (GCC) reported a 19.4 per cent increase in net profits for the first nine months of 2003 to 524mn pesos (US$48m) compared to the same period in 2002, thanks to a strong third quarter, a successful reduction in fixed costs, and a 16.7 per cent increase in cement sales volumes, the company reported.
The improved results came despite a 3.2 per cent slip in sales to 2.68bn pesos (US$244m) over the nine-month period. Sales in Mexico accounted for 56 per cent, while those in the US, mostly through GCC’s subsidiary Dacotah Cement, based in South Dakota, provided 44 per cent of revenues. Overall sales for the third quarter came to 1bn pesos.
Operating profits for the first nine months were 2.1 per cent lower than in same-period 2002, the company added, coming to 702m pesos. Profit margins were 26.2 per cent, slightly better than in same-period 2002.
GCC shares are currently trading at 16.6 pesos/share on the Mexico City bourse, near 12-months highs of 17.2 pesos. The 12-month low is 7.09 pesos.
The company’s total assets at 30 September 2003 were calculated at 9.76bn pesos, 6.3 per cent more than the same date in 2002.
GCC has an installed capacity of 2.4Mta of cement. It has three plants in Chihuahua state, and two in the US.