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Italcementi’s efficiency plans bring down net debt

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World Cement,

Italcementi reports on another year of depressed demand in southern Europe, with Italy experiencing a drop in demand of 19.9%. Consolidated revenues for 2013 reached €4235.4 million, a 5.4% decrease y/y, or -2.2% at constant scope and exchange rates. Cement and clinker sales volumes totaled 43.1 million t, a 6% decline y/y. With the exception of India, prices generally improved and the expectation is that EBITDA in the fourth quarter will be above that of the same period last year.

Asian markets made a positive contribution to the group’s sales, and recovery in North America was also encouraging. Egypt is suffering from fuel shortages, which have impacted potential earnings given that demand remains relatively strong. Thailand was a star performer in the Asia region, with an increase of 5.5%, while India was up 1.6%. Recovery in North America saw a sales upturn of 1.5%.

Cement and clinker sales in the fourth quarter declined 7.2% y/y, which the group attributes to the downturn in the European markets (with the exception of France and Belgium), the situation in Egypt and a contraction in North America and Bulgaria.

Net debt reduced by about €60 million during the year, thanks to efficiency measures, improved prices, and action taken to optimise cash flows.

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