Argos announced that, based on solid results in the majority of the 12 countries in which it operates, the company closed 2014 with record figures. Argos sold 12.5 million metric tons of cement – about 8 percent more than in 2013, and in the concrete business, there was an increase of 18 percent in its sales, totaling 11 million cubic meters sold.
These volumes allowed it to reach total sales of $2.9 billion and to obtain operating profits that were improved by 16 percent, reaching more than $339 million. In the end, net profits grew 59 percent, totaling almost $145 million.
The improved results were based on a variety of fundamental aspects:
- The successful incorporation of the assets acquired in Florida in 2014 (which were in addition to its previously acquired assets) to allow the company to generate an EBITDA of close to $68 million in the United States. The U.S. market is showing significant growth potential thanks to a more dynamic economy that is creating close to 250,000 jobs per month and that continues to be favored by a drop in energy prices. The increase in cement consumption in the markets in which Argos is present was 13 percent, much higher than the country’s average of 8 percent.
- For the Caribbean and Central American region, one of the most noteworthy events was the gain in operational efficiency as a result the consolidation of the operations in Honduras and French Guiana. In a region that is seeing growth in all of its markets, sales of $543 million in this region were recorded, with an increase of 21 percent and a noticeable improvement in terms of efficiency and profitability.
- In Colombia, in addition to maintaining its solid leadership position, the company reached record cement and concrete sales levels and formalized noteworthy expansion projects. Argos plans to invest close to $585 million over the next three years for these expansion projects, which will not only make it the leader in the cement and concrete market, but it will also strengthen the company’s position as the recognized partner for construction and infrastructure projects from the Colombian government.
Argos CEO Jorge Mario Velásquez noted that “2014 was a pivotal year for Argos from many different perspectives. It allowed us to incorporate acquisitions of new assets in the amount of $785 million, to successfully issue bonds for which demand was 2.5 times the offered amount, to invest more than $230 million in the expansion of our business in different countries, to strengthen innovation within the company, and to generate historically high results. We accomplished all of this while staying focused on our conviction of being a sustainable company that is respectful toward people, the environment and the economy.”