Cemex full-year turnover eases, EBITDA improves

Cemex full-year turnover eases, EBITDA improves
Published: 08 February 2013

Tagged Under: Cemex Mexico Results Debt Reduction 

Cemex has reported its full-year 2012 results which show decline in turnover but advance in EBITDA. Net debt is reduced but interest charge and gearing rise.

Cemex' turnover eased by 1.5 per cent in 2012 to US$14,983.8m, but EBITDA did improve by 10.2 per cent to US$2614.7m and the trading profit advanced by 35.3 per cent to US$1308m, having recovered by 12.2 per cent in the previous year from its low point. The net interest charge continued to rise and was ahead by five per cent to US$1420.4m, but 'other' items turned positive, giving a pre-tax loss that was more than halved to US$444.9m, and the net attributable loss fell by 54.5 per cent to US$903.5m.

Net debt, including perpetual notes, was reduced by 6.9 per cent during the year to US$15,674m as a further 50 per cent of the perpetual notes were redeemed. Some 99 per cent of the debt is considered long-term and the gearing level works out at 129.4 per cent compared with 121.3 per cent a year earlier. Some 83 per cent of the debt was denominated in US dollars, compared with 15 per cent in euros and two per cent in Mexican pesos. Capital expenditure in the year was increased by 25.6 per cent to US$609m.

Group cement shipments were 1.5 per cent lower at 65.84Mt and aggregates deliveries declined by 0.4 per cent to 159.39Mt, while ready-mixed concrete deliveries were virtually unchanged at 54.93Mm³. The number of employees was 0.5 per cent lower at 43,905.

The Mexican turnover declined by 2.8 per cent to US$3377.4m and the EBITDA was virtually unchanged at US$1207.4m, with the Mexican EBITDA margins recovering further from 34.4 per cent to 35.8 per cent. Mexico generated 46.2 per cent of the group EBITDA, compared with 50.9 per cent in the previous year. Domestic cement deliveries declined by one per cent in the year on average, while the price was three per cent higher. The commercial and industrial sector was the only part of the construction industry to advance during 2012, while civil engineering and the informal sector being broadly stable.

In the USA, turnover improved by 17 per cent to US$3061.7m, and by some 14 per cent on a like-for-like basis. At the EBITDA level the was a swing from a US$89.3m loss into a profit of US$42.3m and the trading loss was reduced by 30.5 per cent to US$441.6m. The recovery that has been seen to date has largely been restricted to the housebuilding market and has mainly boosted volumes, but has not had that much of an effect on prices as yet. Cement deliveries increased 14 per cent over the year, but the average price improved by just 1 per cent.

In northern Europe turnover fell by 13.3 per cent to US$4100.2m but the EBITDA was only off by 2.2 per cent to US$404.3m and at the trading level there was a 36.8 per cent improvement. Overall cement volumes fell by 13 per cent, but average prices were still some two per cent higher. In Great Britain, cement deliveries were seven per cent lower and prices were up by two per cent in cement. In Germany, where Cemex makes cement in the provinces of North-Rhine Westphalia and Brandenburg, cement deliveries declined by 10 per cent, while the average price improved by three per cent. In neighbouring Poland, cement volumes dropped by 15 per cent and prices by two per cent as infrastructure investments passed their peak.  In France, where Cemex does not sell cement, aggregates deliveries declined by three per cent while prices rose by seven per cent and ready-mixed concrete volumes came off by five per cent and prices improved by two per cent.

In the Mediterranean region, the two biggest markets, Spain and Egypt, continued to fall, leading to a 15.3 per cent decline in turnover to US$1456.8m and the EBITDA came down by 14.4 per cent to US$374.9m. Construction activity in Spain has continued its free-fall. Spanish cement deliveries dropped by 40 per cent in the year, though prices still managed a two per cent increase. In Egypt cement deliveries were down by 10 per cent and prices fell by two per cent, while in aggregates volumes fell by five per cent and local prices by four per cent .

In South America, Central America and Caribbean, turnover rose by 19.8 per cent to US$2093.4m and the EBITDA advanced by 42.8 per cent to US$702.7m. Most of these activities have now been included under the separately quoted Cemex Latin American Holdings, which is 70.46 per cent owned by Cemex. Cement volumes rose by six per cent, as did prices, in both local currency and US dollars, by 10 per cent. Colombia is the most important country and here and here the cement volume rose by five per cent and prices by 19 per cent, while in aggregates prices rose by 6 per cent and volume by 25 per cent. The second most important country now is Panama, where Cemex grew cement deliveries by 32 per cent in 2012.

Asian turnover improved by 7.2 per cent to US$541.9m and the EBITDA staged a 21.1 per cent recovery to US$98.5m, having fallen by 34 per cent in the previous year. Cement volumes advanced by 12 per cent last year while prices improved by eight per cent. The Philippines is the biggest market, and Cemex has no downstream operations there. Cemex' Philippine cement volumes increased by 15 per cent last year and prices improved seven per cent. In addition to the strong Philippine performance, Cemex also saw a good volume performance in Bangladesh last year.