Market Update - Five Month 2020 Preliminary Results
Improved profitability in the January – May 2020 period
TITAN Cement International SA, considering the unprecedented nature of circumstances, wishes to provide an update on trading conditions for its key markets and a preliminary set of results for the period January to May 2020.
Since the emergence of the coronavirus pandemic, TITAN has maintained its focus on protecting its employees and their families, business partners, customers and local communities. At the same time, we ensured that disruptions to our operations were minimal and we are closely monitoring the situation in order to take appropriate actions as market dynamics evolve.
TITAN Group - Overview of the period January – May 2020
Over the first five months of 2020, Group consolidated Revenue at €641.8m dropped by 2.1%, following a 6.1% growth recorded in the first quarter and a subsequent slowdown in April-May, during the peak of the coronavirus crisis.
The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on our Group was less severe than what was initially feared. Construction was deemed to be an essential activity in most markets and all of our cement plants, across all geographies, continued their operation, adjusting production to satisfy the level of market demand.
Operating profitability in the January-May period recorded an improvement compared to the same period in 2019 and EBITDA rose by 5.5% to €97.3m reflecting a reduction in costs, mainly stemming from lower fuel costs.
Group net debt at the end of May 2020 closed at €866m, €30m higher versus December 31st 2019. Operating free cash flow generation was stronger (€19m versus €9m in 2019) owing to higher EBITDA levels and the reduction of capital expenditure in the current year. As of May 31st the Group maintained a strong liquidity position in excess of €400m in cash balances and available committed bank credit facilities.
The Board of Directors decided the return of €0.20 capital per share to all shareholders of the Company on record on May 14, 2020. The date of payment has been set for July 7, 2020.
Regional review January – May 2020
Activity in the USA saw a strong start to the year and in Q1, positive market trends and favorable weather conditions led to a 6.2% Revenue growth compared to 2019. Operations continued uninterruptedly with a moderate slowdown of demand in Florida and the Mid-Atlantic recorded since mid-March. The effect of lockdown measures was more pronounced on our import terminal which supplies the New York Metro area during April, followed by a recovery of sales volumes since the beginning of May. Overall, May 2020 year-to-date Revenue and EBITDA in the USA were close to the performance of the same period last year, with Revenue at €391.9m (-0.4%) and EBITDA at €64.7m (-2.0%).
In Greece, the market setoff on a positive growth momentum in Q1 2020, thanks to public works projects and increased private investment, while cement export sales were at similar levels to 2019. Revenue was up by 2.4%. In April, domestic sales volumes were impacted by the Covid-19 lockdown measures. Most export destinations moreover postponed cement shipments because of local lockdowns. Following a weak April, resurgent demand in the domestic construction sector, as well as restored export volumes, resulted in a May performance which was at par with last year. Total Revenue for the Greece and Western Europe region in the first five months of 2020 declined by 11.4% to €92.1m. At the operating level, EBITDA reached €3.4m compared to €6.1m in the first 5 months of 2019 reflecting the lower production levels in April-May.
Construction in Southeastern Europe had a good start to the year with Revenue at 2019 levels, which turned to a slowdown in late March and April, primarily due to the Covid-19 lockdown measures. In May, sales volumes gradually recovered. Despite the lockdown measures and state of emergency imposed in some countries in the region, which inevitably affected construction, overall market demand proved quite resilient. Construction activity resumed and January-May Revenue for the region posted a 10.4% decrease at €88.9m. The combination of a positive pricing environment with the declining cost of solid fuels, led to an improvement in profitability as EBITDA reached €27.5m, increasing by €1.6m (+6.1%) compared to the first 5 months of 2019.
Demand in Egypt recorded significant growth in Q1, with the market posting an increase of about 4.7%. Sales in April continued, and there was a slowdown imposed in May when the coronavirus spread more widely. In Turkey, we experienced growth in domestic sales since the beginning of the year, as demand remained strong fueled by both public works and private projects. Additionally, exports contributed towards revenue growth. Total revenue in the Eastern Mediterranean region posted a 16.9% increase reaching €68.9m in the first 5 months of 2020. In Q1 Revenue increase had been 21.3%. In an environment of declining solid fuel costs, but stagnant market prices at low levels, operating performance improved as EBITDA was €1.8m positive versus a €5.8m loss in the first 5 months of 2019.
The market had a strong start to the year with increased sales volumes, was followed by a slowdown due to strict lockdown measures and a sales rebound with growth recorded in May. The overall increase in revenue and the reduction in fuel costs resulted in improved profitability for the January – May period.
CAPEX is defined as acquisitions of property, plant and equipment, right of use assets, investment property and intangible assets.
EBITDA corresponds to operating profit plus depreciation, amortization and impairment of tangible and intangible assets and amortization of government grants.
Net debt corresponds to the sum of long-term borrowings and lease liabilities, plus short-term borrowings and lease liabilities (collectively gross debt), minus cash and cash equivalents.
NPAT is defined as profit after tax attributable to equity holders of the parent.
Operating Free Cash Flow
Operating free cash flow is defined as EBITDA adjusted for non-cash items, plus or minus changes in working capital, minus payments for CAPEX.
Operating profit is defined as profit before income tax, share of gain or loss of associates and joint ventures, gains or losses from foreign exchange differences, net finance costs and other income or loss.
This media release is also available on the website of Titan Cement International SA via this link https://ir.titan-cement.com