Buzzi Unicem improves financial ratios

Buzzi Unicem improves financial ratios
15 November 2006

Buzzi Unicem’s turnover rose by 8.3% to EUR2,378.4m, with margins widening from 26.8% to 28.7% as the EBITDA improved by 15.7% to EUR681.9m. With the exception of the Czech Republic, where prices were stable, pricing moved ahead in all countries and, at the net level, consolidated profits improved by 38.4% to EUR255.0m.  At the pre-tax level, the profit actually advanced by 50.7% as net interest payments more than halved from EUR106.5m to EUR48.8m. Net debt at the end of September stood at EUR787.6m to give a gearing level of 34.1%. Group cement shipments were 1.1% higher at 24.8Mt, while ready-mixed deliveries rose by 4.1% to 12.2Mm³.  
The Italian operations generated a turnover 4.8% higher at EUR746.4m, while the EBITDA, at the running level, increased by 11.1% to EUR173.6m.  Cement shipments were down by 1.9%, but average unit revenues grew by 10% compared with the previous year.  Ready-mixed concrete deliveries declined in the third quarter and ended the nine months 0.2% lower.  For the full year, margins are expected to improve on broadly unchanged volumes.
The underlying German turnover improved by 2.8% to EUR354m, while the EBITDA rose by 37.2% to EUR59m. Cement deliveries were 5.4% lower but turnover improved by 2.4% to some €211m thanks to better average prices, though electricity costs were also higher.  Ready-mixed concrete deliveries, on the other hand, did improve by 2.8%.  In Luxembourg, cement volumes improved in the third quarter and are up by 3.3% in the year to date, with the underlying turnover 2.9% higher, but disposals in concrete products left the EBITDA a fifth lower at €16m. 
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