Italcementi: 2013 turnover declines 5.4%

Italcementi: 2013 turnover declines 5.4%
07 March 2014

Italcementi's 2013 turnover declined by 5.4 per cent to EUR4,235.4m while the underlying EBITDA way off by just 1.9 per cent to EUR631.0m.

The depreciation charge declined by 6.5 per cent to EUR426.5m and impairment charges dropped by 89.6 per cent to EUR32.1m from EUR309.4m and the previous year's trading loss EUR140.2m was turned into a trading profit of EUR159.3m. Net financial charges rose by 31.1 per cent to EUR123.9m and the contribution from associates declined by 27.2 per cent to EUR8.1m to give a pre-tax profit of EUR27.5m compared with a pre-tax loss of EUR223.5m in 2012. A EUR115.9m tax charge and a more than doubled minorities charge resulted in a net attributable loss of EUR165.0m, down from EUR395.2m in 2012.

Capital investment declined by a further 8.4 per cent in 2013 to EUR339.4m, including spending on acquisitions of EUR3.6m. Net debt at the end of the year was 3.4 per cent lower at EUR1930m, with the gearing level increasing from 48 per cent to 51.3 per cent.  Shipments of cement and clinker declined by six per cent to 43.1Mt, having fallen by 6.6 per cent in the previous year. The aggregates tonnage eased by 4.2 per cent to 32.5Mt while ready-mixed concrete deliveries were down by 4.7 per cent to 12.3Mm³. There was no profit from the sale of emission rights compared with a EUR40.1m gain in 2012, when Italy and Bulgaria were the largest contributors.

Plans to buy out Ciments Français' 13.3 per cent minority
Italcementi aims to make offers for the savings shares and for the remaining Ciments Français minority. If fully accepted, this would lead to a EUR450m rights issue in July, which would reduce Italmobiliare's stake from the current 61.7 per cent to 45.0 per cent and increase the free float to 55.0 per cent.

Regional performance
The Italian turnover fell by 18 per cent to EUR655.0m, but the underlying EBITDA loss was reduced by 35.1 per cent to EUR15.2m and the trading loss came down by 24.5 per cent to EUR128.1m. Cement deliveries, which dropped 24.6 per cent in 2012, fell by a further 19.9 per cent to 5.2Mt, but the average cement price achieved did show some further improvement. Prices are expected to remain flat in 2014, with volumes declining by a further 5-10 per cent. Three integrated cement works were reduced to grinding centres during the year and one grinding centre was closed. Volumes fell by 22.7 per cent in aggreagtes and by 24.4 per cent in ready-mixed concrete. Improved prices and reduced costs in ready-mixed concrete helped to reduce the losses at the EBITDA level from concrete and aggregates to EUR11m and should be close to break even this year.

The French and Belgian turnover was 1.9 per cent lower at EUR1.473.4m while the underlying EBITDA eased by 0.4 per cent to EUR265.5m. Cement and clinker sales declined by 3.4 per cent in France and were broadly stable in Belgium. Cement prices were stable in France, but declined in Belgium as competitive pressures increased there. Aggregates shipments improved by 0.6 per cent, while in ready-mixed concrete volumes increased by 0.9 per cent in France but declined by 2.1 per cent in Belgium. Trading result was off by 1.8 per cent to EUR169.5m, which suggest an underlying improvement, as there were no gains from the sale of emission rights.

Spanish domestic deliveries were down by a further 10.0 per cent, following the previous year's 32.1 per cent drop, but thanks to higher exports the overall cement and clinker volumes did improve by 4.7 per cent. Aggregates shipments fell by a further 26.8 per cent and ready-mixed concrete deliveries dropped by another 63.4 per cent on top of the previous year's 58.5 per cent fall. The Spanish turnover came down by 10.7 per cent to EUR99.4m and the EBITDA loss was doubled to EUR2.6m. Greek cementitous volumes were fell by 31.5 per cent. Aggregates deliveries fell by 40.6 per cent but infrastructure construction work let to a 29.4 per cent recovery in ready-mixed concrete deliveries following the 48.1 per cent drop seen in 2012. The Greek turnover declined by 14.8 per cent to EUR24.2m, while the EBITDA loss was maintained at EUR3.8m. Bulgarian cement and clinker sales volume improved by 5.6 per cent, essentially because of higher export volumes, while turnover eased by 0.4 per cent to EUR59m and the EBITDA fell by 47 per cent to EUR9m as was there was no contribution from sales of emission rights.

The Egyptian turnover, hit by currency movements, declined by 11.5 per cent to EUR498.9m and the EBITDA fell by 13.4 per cent to EUR110.1m while at the trading level a EUR52.0m profit was achieved against a EUR24.2m loss. Irregular gas supplies led to an 8.6 per cent reduction in domestic deliveries and export volumes fell notably, with the overall volume being 17.6 per cent lower. Investing in coal grinding facilities to reduce the dependence of gas. Ready-mixed concrete deliveries improved by a further 8.3 per cent. Moroccan volumes declined by 4.1 per cent and domestic deliveries fell by 6.4 per cent with turnover being just 0.1 per cent lower at EUR325.0m but the EBITDA improved by 7.0 per cent to EUR143.1m. On the other hand, aggregates volumes advanced by 6.7 per cent and ready-mixed concrete deliveries rose by 12.6 per cent. In Kuwait, cement volumes improved by 9.6 per cent and ready-mixed concrete deliveries improved by 1.0 per cent. Turnover increased by 1.7 per cent to EUR57m while the EBITDA improved by 7 per cent to EUR5m.

Turnover across the USA, Canada and Puerto Rico declined by 2.5 per cent to EUR428.7m but the EBITDA improved by 12.7 per cent to EUR55.0m, thanks to a recovery in prices. Cement volumes improved by 1.5 per cent ahead at 4.3Mt as the US improvement more than made up for the lower volumes in Canada and Puerto Rico. Aggregates deliveries fell by 10.0 per cent to 1.4Mt as a major power station contract in Canada came to an end. Ready-mixed concrete deliveries declined by 9.7 per cent to 0.7Mm³.

Asian turnover improved by 2.1 per cent to EUR532.1m, but the EBITDA declined by 6.5 per cent to EUR80.2m. The Thai turnover rose by 18.1 per cent to EUR269.2m and the EBITDA moved ahead by 58.8 per cent to EUR51.5m. Domestic cement shipments advanced by 13.8 per cent as an additional kiln was brought back on stream. A reduction in exports left the overall volume up by a more modest 5.5 per cent and domestic prices rose by some 12 per cent. Ready-mixed concrete deliveries rose by 36.0 per cent as additional contracts were secured. The Indian turnover declined by 14.1 per cent to EUR213.5m and the EBITDA fell by 45.4 per cent to EUR28.4m, as cement consumption in southern India showed its first decline for more than ten years and the costs of energy and raw materials increased. Domestic cement deliveries were 0.6 per cent ahead, while the overall level of cement and clinker rose by 1.6 per cent, though prices came down as a result of increased competitive pressure. Italcementi's Kazakhstan cement and clinker shipments rose by 6.6 per cent, though including exports the advance was a more modest 4.9 per cent. Deliveries of ready-mixed concrete again rose strongly and advanced by a 45.8 per cent. Turnover increased by 11.2 per cent to EUR49m, but the EBITDA dropped by 92 per cent to EUR0.4m because of higher energy costs and overheads. Work started on the installation of a dry process clinker lime towards the end of the year, with completion scheduled for 2015.

The international trading activities handled 17 per cent less cement and clinker than in 2012 at 3Mt. The reduction largely reflected the reduced volumes available from Egypt, while exports from Spain and Bulgaria both increased. The turnover declined by 17.3 per cent to EUR176.1m and the EBITDA fell by 23.6 per cent to EUR6.8m.

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