CEMEX's net sales increase 19% and EBITDA 9% in first quarter 2001
April 24, 2001
CEMEX, S.A. de C.V. (NYSE: CX) announced today that its net sales for first quarter 2001 were US$1.6 billion, a 19% increase in dollar terms versus first quarter 2000. In real peso terms, net sales grew 19% to Ps 15 billion.
The net sales increase is attributable mainly to higher revenues from the company's operations in the South America & Caribbean Region, as well as the consolidation of Southdown in the U.S. Excluding the consolidation of Southdown, year-over-year net sales remained flat in dollar terms.
EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) was US$532 million for the quarter, rising 9% in dollar terms compared to the same period in 2000. In real peso terms, EBITDA grew 9%, to Ps 5.1 billion. Excluding Southdown, quarterly EBITDA was 4% lower in dollar terms versus the same period a year ago.
Héctor Medina, Executive Vice President of Planning and Finance, said: "Our business model delivered top-line growth well above our historical 10-year average. We achieved double-digit cement and ready-mix volume growth, and maintained price stability in most of our large markets. We feel confident that we will continue on this growth path throughout the rest of the year."
First quarter 2001 operating income decreased 2% in dollar terms to US$390 million. In real peso terms, operating income was down 2% to Ps 3.7 billion.
CEMEX's majority net income during the first quarter grew 7% in dollar terms to US$276.5 million (US$0.99 per ADS) and, in real peso terms, increased 7% to Ps 2.6 billion (Ps 1.89 per CPO). First quarter cash earnings (EBITDA less net financial expense) were 13% higher vis-à-vis the same period of 2000, reaching US$419.5 million (US$1.51 per ADS). In real peso terms, cash earnings were 13% higher than first quarter 2000, reaching Ps 4 billion (Ps 2.86 per CPO).
CEMEX's consolidated free cash flow for first quarter 2001 was US$139 million, down 28% versus the same period a year ago, mainly due to higher capital expenditures and an increase in working capital.
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 and Preferred Equity) was 3.96 times for the latest twelve months versus 3.72 times a year ago. Leverage, defined as Net Debt to Trailing Twelve-Month EBITDA, increased to 2.94 times (including the results of Southdown on a pro-forma basis for full-year 2000) versus 2.45 times for the same period in 2000.
On a worldwide basis, CEMEX's consolidated cement sales volume for the quarter was 13.9 million metric tons, 16% higher compared to first quarter 2000, while ready-mix volumes, at 4.4 million cubic meters, increased 19%.
Quarterly net sales for CEMEX's operations in the North America Region were US$1.05 billion, 34% higher in dollar terms versus first quarter 2000. The region's EBITDA was US$396 million, up 13% compared to the same period a year ago.
The company's operations in South America and the Caribbean posted net sales of US$283 million during the quarter, a 5% growth vis-à-vis the same period in 2000, and EBITDA rose 22% to US$102 million.
Net sales for the Europe, Asia & Africa Region were US$278 million for the quarter, representing a 5% decrease versus first quarter 2000. EBITDA, at US$86 million, was 20% lower than the same period a year ago.
CEMEX is one of the three largest cement companies in the world, with more than 77 million metric tons of production capacity. It is also the world's largest trader of cement and the world's leading producer of white cement. CEMEX is engaged in the production, distribution, marketing, and sale of cement, ready-mix concrete, aggregates, and clinker through operating subsidiaries on four continents. For more information, visit www.cemex.com.
Daniel Pérez Whitaker
(528) 152 2747
(528) 328 3631
José Antonio González