Saycr 2010 net profit drops 60.6 percent

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Debt-laden Spanish builder Sacyr Vallehermoso posted Monday net profits of 204 million euros ($281 million) last year, a 60.6 percent drop over 2009 when earnings were inflated by large one-time gains.

The company posted sales of 4.82 billion euros, a 17.3 percent drop over the previous year while earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose 36 percent to 572 million euros in 2010.

Sacyr, along with its Spanish peers ACS and Acciona, have seen their construction and real estate divisions suffer from lower margins for contracts and falling home sales as a result of the country's property slump after a decade long boom.

The company has also been grappling with high debts from its acquisition of a 20 percent stake in Repsol, Spain's largest oil group, in 2006.

It nevertheless managed to reduce its net debt to 11 billion euros as of the end of 2010 from 11.8 billion euros over the year.

The company said it was in talks with creditors to extend a 5 billion euro loan used to acquire its Repsol stake by a year.

Sacyr's net profit of 506 million euros in 2009 was boosted by the sale of highway operator Itinere Infraestructuras SA to Citigroup Inc. and other assets sales to cut debt.

© 2011 AFP

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