Saudi Yamamah Cement profits from construction boom

Saudi Yamamah Cement profits from construction boom
11 October 2007

Saudi Arabia’s Yamamah Cement posted its second consecutive record profit in the third quarter after boosting output to tap the kingdom’s construction boom.  
Net income the three months to Sept. 30 surged 57 per cent to 228.4 million riyals ($60.91 million), compared with 145 million riyals in the year-earlier period, and beating most analysts’ expectations.  
"Our results are a reflection of more production and sales," Saud al-Dablan, Yamamah’s general manager at told Reuters by telephone from Riyadh. "The construction market is booming."  
Companies in Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest oil exporter, are developing or have announced construction projects in oil, gas and industries worth more than $365 billion, according to London-based Middle East Economic Digest.  
Demand for cement is surging in Saudi Arabia, where the government is trying to tap a regional economic boom triggered by a quadrupling of oil prices during the last six years to develop infrastructure, industry and tourism.  
Yamamah this year expanded a plant in Riyadh, adding 10,000 tonnes per day of production capacity, Dablan said. Forecasts for Yamamah’s profit ranged from 171.58 million riyals to 248 million riyals, according to a Reuters survey last month.  
Operating profit in the nine-months to Sept. 30 jumped 24 percent to 604.1 million riyals, the company said. Earnings per share in the nine months rose to 4.48 riyals from 3.63 riyals in the year-earlier period.
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