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Vicat reports positive six months for cement business

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World Cement,

Vicat shipped 5.3% more cement in the first half of the year, according the company’s latest interim results. Shipments totaled 11.36 million t in the six months to the end of June, compared to 10.79 million t over the same period last year.

“All regions contributed to the increase in volumes except for Europe (excluding France) and Egypt,” the company said. “Growth was particularly strong in India, Kazakhstan, Turkey, West Africa, the US, and France.

Pricing trends were also broadly positive, although there was a significant fall in prices India and they were marginally down in Senegal. Turkey, Egypt, the US, Kazakhstan, Italy, and Switzerland all reported improvements.

Operational sales revenue in Vicat’s cement business was up 1.3% at €743 million over the period, while earnings were steady at €153 million. EBITDA margin on operations sales was steady with the previous year at 10.5%, compared to 20.8% last year.

Sales revenue and earnings were both hit by the strength of the euro, which had a “particularly large negative impact this year,” said Guy Sidos, Vicat Chairman and CEO. At last year’s exchange rate, operating sales would have been up 9.7%, while earnings would have risen 8.5%.

Overall, the group reported operational sales of €1.28 billion and earnings of €197 million, rises of 2.7% and 4.5% respectively. The company’s “organic performance improved significantly,” said Sidos. “On this basis, the Vicat Group expects to deliver improved performance in full-year 2018.

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