Cement maker Holcim Philippines Inc. said net income reached P3.58 billion in 2019, up 41 percent from P2.5 billion in the previous year, on higher operating profit.
Holcim Philippines said in a disclosure to the stock exchange Thursday gross revenues in 2019 stood at P33.5 billion, down from P35.6 billion in 2018, mainly due to lower volumes as a result of tempered public spending.
The strong construction start in the year was negated by a slowdown in two consecutive quarters amid the tepid public infrastructure spending and despite the growth of private development.
Operating EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization), however, improved 37 percent to P6.7 billion from P4.9 billion as the company focused on operational efficiencies and cost management amid the challenges in market demand.
“We made significant progress in improving our company’s ability to deliver strong profitable returns to our shareholders last year. Our sustained focus on operational efficiency and cost discipline for the past years lifted our bottom line,” Holcim Philippines president John Stull said.
“With the completion of our capacity expansion projects, commercial innovations and stronger cost and efficiency mindset, Holcim Philippines is well positioned to deliver sustainable and healthy growth to shareholders and continue our support to this country’s development,” he added.
The group incurred higher financial expenses due to short-term loans used to finance strategic capital expenditures and lease liabilities.
The cement producer in 2019 completed upgrades to its plants in La Union, Bulacan and Davao, that raised the annual cement production capacity to 10 million metric tons.
It also launched nationwide Solido, a blended cement designed as a better alternative to ordinary portland cement for roads and infrastructures.
Solido sales became a significant portion of the company’s product mix in 2019 as customers shifted to the option in recognition of its superior strength and durability.
Holcim Philippines is a member of the LafargeHolcim Group, the world leader in the building materials industry with presence in 80 countries and over 75,000 employees.
LafargeHolcim in May has signed an agreement with San Miguel Corp. to sell its entire 85.7-percent stake in Holcim Philippines.
The process is still subject to regulatory approvals.