Releasing further details on its 2013 performance, Lafarge Pakistan Cement said it saw net sales grow by seven per cent to PKR10.302m (US$105m) from PKR9624m.
The company increased the use of alternative fuels from 28 per cent in December 2012 to 32 per cent in 2013. Power shortage persisted in the country and to avoid a complete shutdown the company rented generator sets. While this proved to be an extensive alternative, it resulted in a net gain for the company.
Gross profit increased to PKR3.225m from PKR3135m while net profit rose to PKR1803m from PKR1488m a year earlier. The company also managed to reduce net debt by PKR1.9bn through operational cash flow.
Capacity utilisation remained at 68 per cent with local sales improving 2.77 per cent from 1.17Mt in 2012 to 1.2Mt in 2013. Pakistan producers saw revenues generally improve across the board thanks to better volumes and pricing. However, Lafarge Pakistan’s exports declined by 8.5 per cent to 433,000t in 2013 from 473,000t a year earlier.
The company is hopeful that domestic dispatches will increase this year with the newly-elected government resolving to launch construction of new mega projects as well as increasing the trend for urbanisation development. However, power shortages are also likely to remain a key issue for domestic producers. Elections in Afghanisan and India are expected to influence Pakistan exports during the year.
Improved road safety
Meanwhile, Lafarge Pakistan has introduced Public Road Transport Safety (PRTS)-compliant vehicles for the safety of its employees.
Thirteen vehicles complying with PTRS were handed over to the company’s sales staff at a ceremony held on March 28 at Lafarge Pakistan’s head office in Islamabad. The cars carry at least two airbags, seatbelts for all passengers and an anti-lock braking system (ABS), according to a company statement.
"The PRTS compliant cars will facilitate our sales force to go the extra mile in Building Better Cities," said Amr Reda, Country CEO of Lafage Pakistan, while handing over the vehicles to the sales team.
"The safety of our employees is of utmost importance to us in everything we do and introducing PRTS compliant vehicles for our sales team,for the first time in the industry, reinforces our leadership in
Health & Safety," he added.