Press Release 25 April 2008 Results for the year 2007 • Revenue €2,405 million, an increase of 13.7%, (like-for-like increase 5.0%) • Operating income €292 million, an increase of 7.8% (like-for-like increase 7.8%) • First year’s trading for Aliaxis Latinoamerica, with strong organic growth • Good performance despite market weakness in the US and Canada and slow-down in Europe • Proposed dividend of €0.21 gross per share (€0.1575 net), an increase of 10.5% The Board of Directors, at its meeting held on 24 April 2008, approved the submission of the consolidated accounts for the year 2007 for approval by the General Meeting of Shareholders to be held on 28 May 2008.
COMMENTS Revenue from sales in 2007 was €2,405 million (2006: €2,116 million), an overall increase of 13.7%. The revenue included a full first year’s trading of Aliaxis Latinoamerica, which added significantly to the Group’s activities in Latin America. At constant exchange rates, and excluding the impact of this and other changes in the scope of the consolidation, the increase in revenue was 5.0%.
The Group’s presence in Latin America was expanded significantly through its investment to acquire 51% of Aliaxis Latinoamerica, a newly-created subsidiary which combined Aliaxis’ existing activities with those of the Durman Group. Growth in the region was strong, despite a slow first half in Mexico and some weakness in Puerto Rico and Nicaragua resulting in pressure on margins. Colombia and Peru were especially buoyant, and in Peru the successful consolidation of the Aliaxis and Durman businesses improved Aliaxis’ market presence.
Statement of Auditor
In Asia, Australasia and Africa results in 2007 were mixed. In China, the business experienced pressure on labour costs arising from new regulations. Trading in Malaysia was very difficult due to intense price competition. In Australia, Aliaxis’ businesses benefited from strong domestic demand and export growth, and all the New Zealand operations met expectations for the year. Results in South Africa were again encouraging with strong sales growth in a competitive environment.
Year ended 31 December (€ million) Revenue EBITDA % of revenue Operating income % of revenue Profit before income taxes Net profit, attributable to : • Minority interests • Group equity holders
OUTLOOK FOR 2008 The increasingly volatile economic conditions in the Group’s major markets make it difficult to predict the outcome of the year. In North America 2008 will be another challenging year, especially in the US market. The Group will focus on maintaining its position and preserving its margins. In Europe, the outlook is also for more difficult conditions in several key markets such as Spain and Germany, although modest gains may be made in Eastern Europe. Latin America offers brighter prospects for demand thanks to stronger economic growth, and the Group will build on the positive start made by Fk_\i Aliaxis Latinoamerica. (( Fk_\iYl`c[`e^
Operating income was €292 million (2006: €271 million), representing 12.2% (2006: 12.8%) of revenue, after charging €9 million (2006: €4.5 million) of restructuring costs. The overall increase in operating income was 7.8%. At constant exchange rates, and excluding the impact of the changes in the scope of the consolidation, the increase remained 7.8%. The 2007 results were achieved largely through the ability of the Group’s North American operations to withstand the very challenging market conditions, especially in the US. Sales volumes were lower than in 2006 as a result of the persistent weakening of the housing market. However, the impact on margins was contained. In Europe, trading activity in the Eurozone started strongly but weakened as the year progressed. Confidence in the European construction sector was affected by the spreading impact of the US sub-prime crisis. That, combined with slowing activity particularly in Spain and Germany, impacted results in the Group’s Building Products and Sanitary sectors. Nevertheless, sales exceeded expectations for 2007 as a whole, partly due to good growth in both the Utilities and Industrial sectors.
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ANALYSIS OF REVENUE By geographical area
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The statutory auditor, KPMG Bedrijfsrevisoren – Réviseurs d’Entreprises, represented by Benoit Van Roost, has confirmed that the audit procedures, which have been substantially completed, have not revealed any material adjustments which would have to be made to the accounting data included in the Company’s annual announcement.
SUMMARY TRADING INFORMATION 2007* 2,405 369 15.3% 292 12.2% 251 182
2006 2,116 345 16.3% 271 12.8% 242 166
Inc/(dec) 289 24
21 9 16
* In view of the existence of put rights beginning in 2011, Aliaxis Latinoamerica is 100% consolidated, with no minority interest, with effect from 1 January 2007.
€ per share, share of Group equity holders * Basic earnings per share Fully-diluted earnings per share Proposed gross dividend
2.11 2.09 0.21
1.93 1.92 0.19
% Inc/(dec) 9.3% 8.9% 10.5%
* Per share data calculated on the total weighted number of shares in issue, net of treasury shares.
SUMMARY CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEET At 31 December (€ million) Intangible Assets Property, Plant and Equipment Non-Current Investments Deferred Tax Asset Other Non-Current Assets Total Non-Current Assets Non-Cash Working Capital Total Equity (attributable to Group) Minority Interests Total Equity Non-Current Liabilities * Deferred Tax Liability Net Financial Debt Total
2007 609 607 31 13 18 1,278 438 1,716 1,002 11 1,013 182 48 473 1,716
2006 496 553 30 19 27 1,125 348 1,473 847 11 858 90 52 473 1,473
Inc/(dec) 113 54 1 (6) (9) 153 90 243 155 155 92 (4) 243
* Non-Current Liabilities in 2007 include €105 million representing the 49% minority interest in Aliaxis Latinoamerica which is subject to put rights beginning in 2011.
Co ntac t: Yves Mer t en s (G ro up Fi na nc e D i re c to r ) - D on Ba iley (G ro u p Co r p o rate Deve lo p me nt M a n a ge r ) - Tel . 32-2-775 5050 – Fax . 32-2-775 5051 - E-mai l : al i axi s@al i axi s.com