Readymix makes €3.9m pre-tax loss

READYMIX has succeeded in reducing its first quarter losses, but a 2.5% year-on-year decline still meant the company made a pre-tax loss of €3.9 million for the first three months of this year.

In an interim management statement, published yesterday, the Dublin-based cement products and building materials provider said that revenues fell by 39% for the period, on a year-on-year basis. This fall was down to “a dramatic drop in volumes across all products”.

“In a very competitive and fragmented market, prices across all of our product lines have either remained stable or achieved minor increases,” the company said. It added that it remained in a healthy financial position, with a positive bank balance of €1.2m at the end of last month.

However, yesterday’s statement also reiterated the central message of the company’s recent full-year results announcement for 2008 — in which it warned that further operating losses (although at “substantially” lower levels) are likely to be generated in 2009 as a whole. Readymix made a €46.7m operating loss and a €47.3m pre-tax loss in 2008.

“For the remainder of 2009, the board expects revenues to continue to fall versus the same period of 2008 — mainly driven by poor volumes due to limited infrastructure spending and reduced demand from housing and commercial construction,” it said .

“Against this historically challenging background for the company and the construction sector, generally, the priorities will continue to be cost management and focusing the company’s investment programme on projects which will deliver efficiency savings and improved products for long-term benefit of the company.”

The company, which holds its AGM on May 18 at Croke Park, has said that every opportunity will be taken to adjust the size and shape of the business to meet market needs.

This will likely see the sale of assets, but is unlikely to see further job losses, after the company’s workforce having been reduced by more than half in the last two years.


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