La route avance
Revenue up 6.4% at €12.4 billion
Net profit (Group share) up a sharp 50% at €336 million
Proposed dividend: €7.26 per share (+15%)
The Board of Directors of Colas, chaired by Mr. Hervé Le Bouc, met on February 27, 2012 to finalize the 2011 financial statements that are to be presented to the Annual General Shareholders' Meeting on April 17, 2012.
Consolidated key figures - in millions of euros
Current operating income
Current operating margin
+ 0.7 pt
Net profit (Group share)
Net cash or net debt position
Despite a sluggish economic and financial environment, consolidated revenue for 2011 recorded a 6.4% increase at 12.4 billion euros, boosted by good weather conditions everywhere except in North America during the first half year.
In France, revenue totaled 7.2 billion euros, up 8.0 % (6.4% with an unchanged scope of business).
In mainland France where roads account for 72% of the Group's business, revenue increased by 8.7% at 6.8 billion euros. On the other hand, the French overseas departments saw their activity drop 3%.
In the international units and French overseas territories, revenue amounted to 5.2 billion euros, up 4.3% (3.3% with unchanged scope of business and comparable exchange rates). Asia/Australia (+26%) and North America (+7%) have enjoyed growth; northern Europe is up slightly (+1% excluding the sales of refined products); Africa and the Indian Ocean have recorded a small drop (-2%) and central Europe is down sharply (-17%).
Current operating income is up 28% at 466 million euros
Current operating income totaled 466 million euros, a 28% increase against fiscal 2010. The increase is the result of a strong-willed policy to focus on profit margin instead of volume, combined with a number of streamlining and improvement programs in particular in central Europe, as well as throughout the Group's entire network, and the pursuit of a targeted acquisition policy.
Net profit (Group share) up 50% at 336 million euros (net margin of 2.7% of revenue)
Operating income at 466 million euros increased by a sharp 49% compared to fiscal 2010 as no non-current operating expenses were posted, contrary to 2010 when 52 million euros in non-current operating expenses had to be recorded. Net profit has hence increased at 336 million euros, up 50%.
Positive net cash position at 28 million euros
A cautious investment policy focused on industrial production units and on reinforcing the Group's foothold in the materials sector via external growth (Gamma Materials Ltd in Mauritius, Servant in mainland France) combined with cash flow from operations before cost of debt and taxes at 915 million euros have allowed the Group to post 28 million euros in net cash, compared to 57 million euros in net debt at the end of December 2010.
Net profit at Colas
Net profit for the parent company Colas amounted to 325 million euros, compared to 267 million euros in 2010.
The Board of Directors has decided to put forward a proposal to the General Shareholders' Meeting on April 17, 2012 to pay out a dividend of 7.26 euros per share, against 6.30 euros per share paid out for 2010, i.e., a 15% increase. The total amount of dividends paid out will total 237 million euros.
Work on hand
Colas secured a great number of contracts in 2011, a year that was marked by a series of complex projects such as the Highway A63 concession, along with PPPs for the Vichy bypass and for city street maintenance in Le Plessis-Robinson, and a high energy-performance contract for the City of Paris. Commercial successes of this type showcase the Group's capacity to accompany growth in these complex markets. Work-on-hand at the end of December 2011 amounted to 6.5 billion euros, up 5% (4% in mainland France and 7% in the international units and French overseas departments). The level of work-on-hand allows the Group to move smoothly into the beginning of the year. With the award of preferred bidder status to a consortium including Colas Rail and Colas Midi-Méditerranée on the Nîmes-Montpellier railway bypass PPP contract, 2012 has gotten off to a good start.
Colas is moving into 2012 with improved competiveness, illustrated by the increase in profits in 2011, despite a sluggish environment.
Market trends for Colas' businesses remain difficult to forecast. France has a number of major projects in the making or being launched, and other projects are well underway (public transport, urban development, maintenance on road and rail infrastructures, PPPs). Nonetheless, their finalization will depend on how local authorities are able to finance them. Colas companies in North America, in the wake of 2011, should continue to enjoy upbeat business trends in Canada and a resistant market in the United States, along with a recovery - albeit slight - of the US economy. In Europe, outlook for business remains stable in the west and more uncertain in central Europe, where the Group is still targeting on figures close to the breakeven point, after a major decrease in losses for 2011 vs. 2010. In Africa and the Indian Ocean zone, business should be stable or slightly growth-oriented. Asia and Australia will continue to operate in a dynamic environment.
Against this backdrop, Colas is paving the way into the year with caution. The Group will pursue its strategy focusing on profit margin instead of volume. Confident in its ability to adapt, Colas boasts a number of strong suits - in particular a wide sweeping geographic spread and a solid financial situation. On the basis of all available data, the initial revenue forecast for 2012 is 12.5 billion euros.
Compensation of Corporate Officers
In compliance with AFEP-MEDEF recommendations, information regarding the compensation of corporate officers and the granting of stock option is available on line as of this day at http://www.colas.com/.
The statutory auditors have duly audited and certified the consolidated financial statements and the parent company financial statements.
Financial statements and annexes are available at http://www.colas.com/.
A presentation of financial analysts will be held on March 1, 2012 at 11:00 am and will also be made available at http://www.colas.com/.
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