Net sales grow 17% and cash earnings 44% in dollar terms during 1999 third quarter
October 19, 1999
CEMEX, S.A. de C.V. (NYSE: CX) announced today that its net sales for the third quarter of 1999 reached US$1.239 billion, a 17% increase in dollar terms compared to the same quarter of 1998. In real peso terms, net sales grew 7% to $11.599 billion pesos.
Cash earnings, as defined by EBITDA less net interest expense, totaled US$360 million (US$1.43 per new ADS) for the third quarter of 1999, up 44% in dollar terms versus the same year-ago quarter. The new ADS ratio is five new CPO shares per one new ADS. In real peso terms, cash earnings were $3.372 billion pesos ($13.36 pesos per new ADS), 32% higher than the same period of 1998.
Héctor Medina, Executive Vice President of Planning and Finance, said: “These strong results are proof that our business strategy is the correct one. The tight control on costs, together with healthy cement prices and higher domestic demand in most of our markets, continue to deliver solid cash flows that underscore CEMEX´s leadership position in the global cement industry."
Operating income for the third quarter of 1999 grew 35% measured in dollars to US$388 million, or 23% in real terms to $3.629 billion pesos. Operating margin was 31.3%, up from 27.2% for the same period last year.
EBITDA expanded 34% measured in dollars, to US$477 million, or 23% in real terms to $4.463 billion pesos. EBITDA margin increased to 38.5% from 33.5% reported in the comparable period of 1998.
On a worldwide basis, CEMEX´s consolidated cement volumes for the third quarter grew 8% vis-à-vis the third quarter of 1998. Ready-mix volumes declined 6%.
CEMEX´s North America region (which includes the Mexican and U.S. operations) posted net sales of US$747 million for the third quarter of 1999, which represent a 27% increase in dollar terms versus the same period of 1998. The region´s EBITDA rose 35% to US$343 million.
South America & Caribbean region´s net sales reached US$248 million, a 5% growth compared to the corresponding year-ago quarter, and EBITDA went up 23% to US$83 million.
Net sales for the Europe & Asia region totaled US$234 million, 1% up versus the third quarter of 1998, while EBITDA rose 5% to US$89 million.
CEMEX´s majority net income during the third quarter grew 178% in dollar terms to US$251 million, or 154% in real peso terms to $2.353 billion pesos. Earnings per new ADS were US$0.99 ($9.30 pesos), versus US$0.37 ($3.74 pesos) during the same period of 1998.
Free cash flow for the third quarter of 1999 totaled US$233 million, 122% higher than a year ago. In real peso terms, free cash flow increased 103% to $2,185 million pesos.
Interest plus Preferred dividend coverage (EBITDA before operating lease payments and cost restatements for inflation divided by interest expense plus dividend on Preferred Capital Securities) was 3.52 times for the trailing twelve months versus 2.85 times a year ago. Leverage as defined by Net Debt to Trailing Twelve Month EBITDA was 2.76 times, versus 3.45 times reported for the third quarter 1998.
Founded in 1906, CEMEX is one of the three largest cement companies in the world with approximately 61 million metric tons of production capacity. Through operating subsidiaries positioned in three different continents, CEMEX is engaged in the production, distribution, marketing and sale of cement, ready-mix concrete, aggregates and clinker. In addition, the company is the world´s leading producer of white cement and the world´s largest trader of cement and clinker.