Argos has announced its financial results for the third quarter of 2014 (3Q14). Consolidated income showed an increase of 16 percent compared to the same period in 2013, with both cement and concrete sales volumes continuing their steady upward trend, with accumulated growth rates of 9 percent and 18 percent, respectively.
Performance in the United States continued to show healthy growth dynamics. Dispatched cement and concrete volumes registered upturns of 59 percent and 27 percent, respectively, compared to the same period in the previous year, reaching revenues of more than $804 million, or an increase of 44 percent.
The main U.S. markets in which the company is present are Georgia, Florida and Texas, with accumulated year-to-date cement consumption growth rates of 24 percent, 22 percent and 13 percent, respectively, while the average of the North American market as a whole is 8.5 percent. Thus, according to the Portland Cement Association (PCA), these will be the states at the forefront of market recovery in the United States, which is expected to see a compound annual growth rate of 7.5 percent up to 2019, noted Argos.
Central America and the Caribbean have seen substantial improvements and satisfying results in terms of growth in revenues, reaching $417 million, about 22 percent more than what was obtained during the same period last year. The regional division’s outstanding performance stems mainly from the results of its Honduran and Panamanian operations, which continue to be the most important markets for the company.
In Colombia, the market shows signs of healthy growth, with Argos maintaining its position as market leader, with increases of 3 percent and 5 percent in dispatched cement and concrete volumes, respectively. Additionally, the recent decisions of the National Government regarding budget allocations for infrastructure, housing and education will ensure the continuation of the dynamism that the company has seen in the country’s construction sector.
Argos ended 3Q14 with an increase of 69 percent in its accumulated net profit, when compared to the one registered in the first nine months of last year. This outcome is the result of the good performance seen in most of the countries in which it operates and of the consolidation of the operational excellence program on which it has been working and will continue to work in the future.
In this same context, other noteworthy facts are the announcements of the 2.3-million-ton expansion at the Sogamoso plant (Colombia), the 900,000-ton enlargement in the department of Antioquia (Colombia) and the new mill at the Harleyville plant in South Carolina. All of these initiatives will improve Argos’ future operational efficiency.
The company’s year-to-date EBITDA rose about 8 percent, to $415 million. This result can be explained mainly by the positive performance of the U.S. Regional Division and the successful consolidation of the recently acquired assets in Florida, Honduras and French Guiana.
Regarding the quarterly results, Argos CEO Jorge Mario Velásquez said, “We have been operating ever more efficiently and sustainably, with ambitious expansion projects that will allow us to capitalize on the growth opportunities that we see in the upward and dynamic markets in which we participate. On the other hand, the good results of our recent acquisitions strengthen our strategy and contribute to the company’s performance.”