HeidelbergCement recorded increased sales volumes in all business lines in the first quarter of 2019 due to continued positive momentum in many of its markets and an improvement in weather conditions in Europe and North America.
Revenue in the first quarter of 2019 grew significantly to €4.2 billion, which corresponds to a rise of 17% in comparison with the same quarter of the previous year and an increase of 15% on a comparable basis. Key revenue drivers were – in some cases significant – increases in sales volumes in Western and Southern Europe, Northern and Eastern Europe-Central Asia, and North America as well as the price increases that were successfully implemented in many markets.
“HeidelbergCement has made an excellent start to 2019,” said Dr. Bernd Scheifele, chairman of the managing board. “We have achieved a considerable increase in revenue and result from current operations in comparison with the same quarter of the previous year. In addition to improved weather conditions, sustained strong demand and successful price increases contributed towards this positive development. Our action plan is progressing well. We have already secured savings of more than €50 million for 2019 and we have successfully continued the optimization of our portfolio. As a result, we have significantly reduced net debt on a comparable basis. We’re on track to achieve our goals for 2019.”
In North America, order books overall are solid and there is a positive price momentum, teh company said. The North region recorded strong growth in sales volumes compared with the first quarter of 2018, which was significantly impaired due to poor weather. The price pressure on the northern Atlantic coast is compensated by efficient cost management. Sales volumes in the South were driven in particular by commercial construction and strong demand in Florida. Shipments of the West and Canada regions were impaired by persistent rainfall and a long winter.