LafargeHolcim’s revenues gained momentum through 2Q18, resulting in a positive first six months of the year for the Swiss company. Revenue was up 6.2% in 2Q18 and 4.8% in 1H18 on a like-for-like basis; however, increasing costs weighed on the company’s earnings, which rose only 0.6% in the quarter to finish the first six months down 3.8%.
“Increasing energy prices and cost inflation have been challenging,” said the company’s CEO, Jan Jenisch. However, “operational issues in some markets have been addressed and we expect to delivery increasing margins, as we capture the upward trend in demand through 2H18.”
Asia Pacific the greatest boost to earnings with the region reporting a 17.1% like-for-like increase in earnings in 1H18. Latin and North American and European earnings were also positive on a like-for-like basis; however, earnings in the Middle East Africa region were down 33.5% on a like-for-like basis.
Group sales of cement in 1H18 were up 4.4% on a like-for-like basis at 108.2 million t. Volume growth was particularly strong in Latin America, where the company reported a 12.1% like-for-like increase to 12.6 million t. Like-for-like volumes were also positive in Europe (up 5.5% at 21.3 million t), North America (up 3.4% at 8.8 million t), and Asia Pacific (up 5.1% to 45.5 million t).
Volumes declined Middle East Africa, however, falling 2.5% to 17.7 million t.
The company also confirmed its 2018 targets for net sales growth of 3% - 5% and an increasing in earnings of at least 5% on like-for-like basis.
“Strong overall trends are reflected in earnings and revenue growth for the six months in all regions apart from Middle East Africa, where conditions remained difficult,” said Jenisch. “Given these trends, as well as solid execution of simplification and performance measures, the full-year targets for 2018 have been confirmed.”
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcement.com/europe-cis/30072018/lafargeholcim-reports-revenue-growth-in-2q18/