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Home News Holcim sees growth in emerging markets

Holcim sees growth in emerging markets

Published on 15/08/2012

The Swiss cement group Holcim unveiled a slight rise in first half profits Wednesday thanks to growth in developing markets but struck a pessimistic note on its European activities.

Net profit for the world’s second biggest cement maker rose nine percent to 389 million francs (324 million euros) between January and June, in line with analysts’ expectations.

Operating profit rose 1.9 percent to 1.9 billion francs, while total sales were up 2.1 percent to 10.4 billion francs over the same period.

Growing demand from Asia, north and Latin America as well as Africa and the Middle East boosted sales and should continue to do so in 2012, the firm said in a statement.

Excluding Russia and Azerbaijan, “this positive picture contrasts with the negative market development in Europe, caused by the debt crisis”, where sales were down 9.8 percent, it said.

“Holcim now expects a decline in Europe,” it added.

In addition to depressed sales in Europe — a market three times larger than North America — Holcim cited restructuring costs in Spain, Great Britain, Brazil and Mexico worth 37 million francs (31 million euros).

Traders reacted negatively to the news and sharess in Holcim were down 1.83 percent at 58.90 francs in morning trade.