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Cementos Portland Valderrivas beats targets despite the crisis


Cementos Portland Valderrivas beats targets despite the crisis

The keynote by Cementos Portland Valderrivas Chairman Dieter Kiefer at the Shareholders' Meeting today in Pamplona focused on strengthening the company's R&D and innovation policies as a way to emerge stronger from the crisis. R&D and innovation are bearing fruit in the form of specific products for industry, such as fast-setting cement and microcement.
Cementos Portland Valderrivas beats targets despite the crisis

Mr Kiefer gave shareholders an overview of the company's achievements in 2010. He highlighted that the Group exceeded projections despite the economic crisis, for example, saving 121 million euro via the Plan 100+, i.e. 21% more than expected. Cash flow net of capital expenditure totalled 226 million euro.

Portland Valderrivas ended the year with net attributable income of 1.2 million euro and EBITDA of 219.7 million euro; it also reduced interest-bearing debt by 132 million euro. The company also enhanced its policies on workplace health and safety, corporate social responsibility and talent development and management.

Mr Kiefer also spoke about changes in the group's international asset portfolio, such as the sale of the Giant Cement Group to CPV subsidiary Uniland Internacional B.V. for 700 million euro. This intercompany transaction did not modify equity and its goal was to situate all Group assets outside of Spain under a single international company.

Mr Kiefer commented that the 2011 outlook would be conditional upon economic growth in the countries where the Group operates. Sales of cement, concrete and aggregate increased in the first quarter of 2011 for the first time in thirteen quarters (i.e. since the fourth quarter of 2007). With a view to emerging stronger from the crisis, the Group has implemented its 2011 Excellence Plan, a continuation of Plan 100+, and aims for a cash flow net of capital expenditure of 200 million euro while maintaining strict control of capex and working capital.

The Shareholders' Meeting re-appointed Juan Castells Masana as external proprietary director and Dieter Kiefer as executive director, both for a 2-year term. Specific articles of the Articles of Association, the Rules of the General Meeting of Shareholders and the Rules of the Board of Directors were modified to adapt them to legislative changes and update texts that had become obsolete. As an exceptional measure, the Meeting cancelled the dividend with a view to strengthening the Group's financial position; members of the Board also waived their remuneration.

2011 Excellence Plan
Mr Kiefer underlined the success of the Plan 100+ and the launch of the 2011 Excellence Plan with a view to optimising the company's competitiveness. The Plan, which is already producing results, has the following objectives: identify and implement actions to improve EBITDA, reduce costs and increase revenues; and maintain the recurrent savings achieved under Plan 100+.
Energy efficiency measures
Significant investments were made to retrofit the Mataporquera, Monjos, El Alto, Hontoria and Lemona plants to burn alternative fuels with a view to fulfilling the ambitious energy-from-waste plan. The plan aims to increase alternative fuel usage at cement plants to 15% in 2011 and 30% in 2012 (from 7% in 2010). This will enable CPV to decrease petcoke consumption, thereby reducing CO2 emissions and cutting production costs.

Corporate Social Responsibility
Cementos Portland Valderrivas group was ranked among the top 100 Spanish companies for the second consecutive year according to the Spanish Monitor of Corporate Reputation (MERCO), which listed the company as leader in its sector.

Cementos Portland Valderrivas was awarded the European Excellence Award in the Environment category by the Madrid Regional Government in June 2010. The award was presented to the El Alto plant in Madrid province.

A corporate volunteer event organised together with the Adecco Foundation was held at the El Alto plant in 2010, the goal being to enhance social and labour integration of people with disabilities. The Family Plan, established in 2009, provides personalised attention to employees' family members with disabilities, both children and adults up to 65.

 The Chairman of Portland Valderrivas concluded his speech with an optimistic message for the company, which continues advancing its sustainable development model. He stated that the necessary measures were being applied to weather the current lengthy economic crisis. Mr Kiefer expressed his gratitude to stakeholders, shareholders, clients, suppliers, and especially to employees, whose hard work is enabling the company to achieve its goals.