Holcim back to profitability in Q2

cement, concrete, construction

Holcim Philippines, the country’s leading cement maker, chalked up P721.4 million in second quarter net income, reversing the P88.1 million net loss in the same period last year when it had to shut down its manufacturing facilities in Luzon to comply with pandemic-related lockdown restrictions.

This brought Holcim’s six-month net profit to P1.63 billion, 294 percent better than last year, albeit coming from a low base as the pandemic last year wreaked havoc on the domestic economy.

Sequentially, Holcim’s second quarter profit declined by 20 percent from the P908.92 million profit seen in the first quarter of this year. In early April, the government reimposed tough lockdown measures in Metro Manila and adjacent provinces to curb the resurgence in COVID-19 cases. As the daily count of new COVID-19 cases improved, restrictions were eased for the rest of the quarter.

For the second quarter, Holcim reported that cement demand and prices recovered with the rebound in construction activity.

Operating cash flow as measured by earnings before interest and taxes for the second quarter rose by more than16 times year-on-year to P953.6 million, attributed by Holcim to ”rigorous cost discipline, sustained operational excellence and improved volumes.”

Holcim’s net sales for the first semester increased by 20 percent year-on-year to P13.7 billion, buoyed by sustained demand in the retail segment with the easing of quarantine measures.

Six-month cash flow improved by 85 percent to P3.2 billion, attributed to “efficiency gains and strong cost discipline” as the company managed the impact of rising costs of fuel, power and freight alongside logistical bottlenecks caused by renewed restrictions.

In a press statement, Holcim president Horia Adrian said: “Winning with purpose and helping build progress in the Philippines perfectly capture our performance in the second quarter. Aside from delivering outstanding results, we also helped our partners build greener, smarter, and for all.”

“We continue our efforts to use recycled materials in our plants, having consumed more than 208,000 tons of wastes as alternative fuels and raw materials. Our ‘Holcim Helps’ initiatives on affordable housing, health and sanitation benefitted more than 27,000 people. We are also making huge strides in innovation and digitalization with our ‘easybuild’ digital platform now used by 99 percent of our customers for a better experience in transacting with us particularly in placing orders and monitoring deliveries.”

A number of digitalization projects will likewise raise efficiency and safety of operations moving forward, Adrian said. “All these make us confident in having a more positive impact on the country as we deliver profitable growth to our shareholders.”

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