The Lafarge Group has announced sales of 7,886 million euros (FRF 51,729 million) at September 30, 1999, as compared to 7,342 million euros (FRF 48,162 million) for the first nine months of 1998, a gross increase of 7.4%.
This increase results from:
- negative impact of exchange rate variations of 1.4%, arising chiefly from the depreciation of the Brazilian real
- structural changes with impact of 6.8%
New entries to the consolidation were responsible for contributing additional sales of 644 million euros (FRF 4,223 million). This principally concerns Lafarge South Africa, Jordan Cement Factory (Jordan), and Seacem and Continental (Philippines), as well as gypsum operations in South Korea.
Removals from the consolidation primarily relate to the disposal of aggregates quarries in France and the United Kingdom and the sale of the flat roofing business in Germany, as well as a change in accounting methods concerning the lime business in North America.
- a positive variation in business of 2.0%
The increase in business for the third quarter of the year was 1.3%, which brings the improvement since January 1 to 2%.
The variation for each Division at September 30 was as follows: Cement: up 2.7%; Aggregates & Concrete: up 1.3%; Roofing: up 0.7%; Gypsum: up 7.4%; Specialty Products: stability.
Recent characteristic market trends include:
- good trends in Western Europe (53% of the Group's consolidated sales at September 30), particularly in Spain and France;
- continuing improvement in sales in North America (26% of consolidated Group sales at September 30), in spite of the negative impact in the United States of very bad climatic conditions in September on aggregates and concrete sales.
Building sector trends remain very favorable in North America.
- a contrasted economic climate in the rest of the world (21% of consolidated Group sales at September 30). In particular, there has been a strong increase in business in Poland and Honduras, along with an improvement in sales in Morocco. On the other hand, recent trends in sales in Turkey and Kenya have been negative. In Asia, key factors include increased volumes for gypsum in South Korea (a business not included in the consolidation in 1998) and trends towards a slight improvement in Indonesia.
|At 30/09/99||At 30/09/99|
|Euro Million||FRF Million||Euro Million||FRF Million|
|Aggregates & Concrete||2,381||15,620||2,318||15,210|
|Total at end September||7,886||51,729||7,342||48,162|