Germany: Poor weather in the US and rising energy prices have reduced HeidelbergCement’s earnings so far in 2018. Its result from current operations before depreciation and amortisation (RCOBD) fell by 7% year-on-year to Euro2.23bn in the first nine months of 2018 from Euro2.41bn in the same period in 2017. Despite this, its revenue rose by 3% to Euro13.4bn from Euro13bn and its sales volumes of cement grew by 4% to 97Mt from 93.5Mt. By region, revenue rose in all regions except for North America, but RCOBD fell in Western and Southern Europe, North America and Asia-Pacific.
“Improved financial costs and lower taxes overcompensated weaker than expected results from current operations due to significant rainfalls in our core markets in the USA as well as a higher than planned energy cost inflation,” said Bernd Scheifele, chairman of the managing board of HeidelbergCement. He added that, “Due to the weaker operational development, we had to partially adapt our outlook for 2018. As a countermeasure we have initiated an action plan with focus on three levers: portfolio optimisation, operational excellence as well as cash flow and shareholder return.”