Saint-Gobain sales up 5% YoY in 1Q23

Saint-Gobain sales up 5% YoY in 1Q23
16 May 2023

Saint-Gobain has reported “solid” sales growth in the opening three months of 2023 with like-for-like sales up 4.7 per cent to EUR12,406m, compared to EUR12,007m in the same period a year earlier. According to the company, prices were up 10.2 per cent over the 1Q23, driven by price increases implemented in 2022 and certain additional measures taken locally at the start of 2023, which generated a positive price-cost spread overall. Volumes were down 5.5 per cent due to a moderate market slowdown, reflecting the current market situation of a marked decline in new construction but good resilience overall in renovation. 

Sales in northern Europe advanced one per cent in the 1Q23, driven by prices and amid a sharp slowdown in new construction, while renovation, which accounted for around 55 per cent of sales, proved more resilient. The world’s first carbon-neutral plasterboard production began in Norway at the company’s Fredrikstad plant, while in Germany sales were subdued by an energy shock and rapid rise in interest rates impacting new construction. 

In southern Europe, Middle East & Africa, sales improved by 8.1 per cent on the back of prices and a resilient renovation market, which accounted for almost 70 per cent of sales. France continued to benefit from its strong exposure to the renovation market, while in Turkey, Dalsan merged its activities with Saint-Gobain, creating a leader in plaster and plasterboard with a broadened offer of light and sustainable solutions. 

The Americas delivered 0.5 per cent organic growth, also driven by prices, despite a decline in the new construction market. The North American region saw sales expand by 0.5 per cent YoY in the 1Q23, supported by its range of interiors solutions, including gypsum, insulation and ceilings. The acquisition of Asphaltica, an asphalt shingle recycling technology used in roofing, is expected to help accelerate circular economy initiatives in the region. Latin America reported 0.7 per cent growth with Mexico benefiting from the successful integration of Impac in construction chemicals. The completion of the acquisition of Térmica San Luis, a leader in insulation in Argentina, will consolidate the group’s strong operating performance in this country, according to Saint-Gobain. 

Against a high prior-year comparison based, the Asia-Pacific region reported 0.5 per cent organic growth in the first quarter of 2023. India saw a good performance, enhanced by its recent acquisition of the glass wool insulation company, UP Twiga. Despite pandemic disruptions early in the quarter, China delivered moderate growth. 

In the company's High Performance Solutions segment, businesses serving global construction customers saw a 50 per cent rise in sales, mainly due to the integration of GCP. The positive trends in sales by Chryso also continued, driven by innovation in decarbonisation solutions for construction. 

Looking ahead to the full-year 2023, “Saint-Gobain’s priority is to continue to demonstrate its resilience by consolidating its high operating performance level.” Despite the moderate market slowdown, the group is targeting an operating margin of 9-11 per cent in 2023, in line with its ‘Grow & Impact’ strategic plan target. 

Published under Cement News