Buzzi Unicem’s profit boosted by lower interest costs

Buzzi Unicem’s profit boosted by lower interest costs
04 August 2017

Buzzi Unicem's first half turnover improved by 7.3 per cent to EUR1353.8m and EBITDA advanced by 8.4 per cent to EUR241.1m. Group cement deliveries improved by 2.3 per cent to 12.5Mt, while ready-mixed concrete deliveries rose by six per cent to 5.9Mm³.

The depreciation and impairment charges advanced by 16.1 per cent to EUR108.6m and the first half trading profit was ahead by 2.8 per cent to EUR132.5m. The interest charge dropped by 66.3 per cent to EUR12.3m and the pre-tax profit rose by 31.7 per cent to EUR170.1m. After a tax charge 34.7 per cent higher at EUR50.8m and a minorities charge 45.2 per cent ahead at EUR1.7m, there was a net attributable profit of EUR119.3m, up from EUR90.3m. Net debt at the end of June was 14.6 per cent lower at EUR909.2m, giving a gearing level of 33.5 per cent, compared with 41.6 per cent a year earlier.

Italian cement and clinker volumes were 4.6 per cent higher with domestic deliveries stable and exports of cement and clinker recording strong growth. The average sales prices were lower because of the higher export and clinker volumes. Ready-mixed concrete deliveries were higher, but prices were lower. Buzzi Unicem's Italian turnover improved by 6.7 per cent to EUR200.2m and the loss at the EBITDA level rose from EUR9.3m to EUR13.4m. However, net of non-recurring items the loss was increased from EUR1.8m to EUR11.2m.

In Germany, turnover improved by 4.2 per cent to EUR282.5m while the EBITDA improved by 10.0 per cent to EUR32.7m. Cement sales were 6.1 per cent higher at 2.57Mt and average prices were stable thanks to a recovery in sales of oil-well cement and other special products. Ready-mixed concrete deliveries were little changed, but prices showed some improvement. Luxembourg and Dutch cement and clinker volumes improved by 2.5 per cent and prices showed a slight improvement. Ready-mixed concrete deliveries were 4.6 per cent higher and prices showed some recovery. The turnover improved by 3.2 per cent to EUR90.7m while the EBITDA declined from EUR13.5m to EUR6.2m.

The Polish turnover recovered by 4.6 per cent to EUR45.6m, but the EBITDA declined by 21.4 per cent to EUR9.2m. Cement volumes edged ahead by 0.1 per cent recovery, and prices improved by 3.7 per cent in local currency. Ready-mixed concrete deliveries improved by 1.2 per cent, and prices strengthened. The Czech and Slovak turnover improved by 8.3 per cent to EUR65.6m and the EBITDA rose by EUR0.6m to EUR13.4m. Cement volumes advanced by 11.9 per cent but the average price was a little weaker in local currency, while ready-mixed concrete volumes improved by 13.4 per cent and prices improved slightly.

The Ukrainian turnover advanced by 34.8 per cent to EUR42.6m and the EBITDA improved by EUR4.2m to EUR8.8m. Cement volumes improved by 5.1 per cent and local prices rose by 30.3 per cent, reflecting the high inflation rate. In the Russian operations, cement shipments eased by 0.6 per cent, but for oil well cement volumes recovered. Cement prices in local currency were slightly improved. Turnover rose by 29.4 per cent to EUR87.0m while the EBITDA advanced by 36 per cent to EUR22.9m, helped by a recovery in the value of the rouble.

In the United States, turnover improved by 2.6 per cent to US$606.9m, which on translation converts into a 5.7 per cent increase to EUR560.4m. At the EBITDA level, there was a 9.8 per cent improvement to US$174.8m, which on conversion turns into EUR161.4m. Sales volumes eased by 0.9 per cent in cement, with the poor Houston market having a depressing effect. The average cement price improved by five per cent in dollar terms. Ready-mixed concrete deliveries, which are heavily biased towards Texas eased by 1.1 per cent and prices were also lower. 

The 50 per cent-controlled Mexican associate Corporaciòn Moctezuma, which is accounted for by the equity method, reported an 18.9 per cent increase in turnover to EUR358.5m, with the EBITDA advancing by 18 per cent to EUR173m. Cement volumes grew, helped by the new second line at Apazapan, while ready-mixed concrete deliveries maintained weaker profile, but prices in local currency were ahead.

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Tagged Under: Buzzi Unicem Italy Results Europe