Third quarter trading update 2017
Bekaert achieves 11% top line growth
Bekaert achieved consolidated sales of € 3 073 million in the first nine months of 2017, up more than 11% from the same period last year. The consolidated sales growth stemmed from increased organic sales (+7.5%), the net effect of mergers, acquisitions and divestments (+3.7%) and limited currency effects (+0.3%). The organic growth was driven by higher sales volumes (+2.5%) and the aggregate effect of wire rod price increases and price-mix (+5%).
The key trends in the third quarter were:
- Continued firm demand from automotive and construction markets.
- In EMEA and Asia Pacific, volumes were back in line with the growth of the first quarter of 2017, which boosted the consolidated organic volume growth in the third quarter (+6.3% versus Q3 last year).
- The performance gap between Latin America and the other regional segments is widening.
- Wire rod prices increased significantly and were difficult to pass on in almost all of our businesses.
- Demand for Bekaert’s loose abrasive sawing wire products contracted due to the acceleration of the technology shift towards new generation solutions.
- The net effect of mergers, acquisitions and divestments turned negative in the third quarter (-2%) and related to the integration of Sumaré (Brazil) into the joint-venture partnership with ArcelorMittal through which it has been accounted for under the equity method since 1 July 2017. The integration of the Bridon activities into the Bridon-Bekaert Ropes Group (in Bekaert’s consolidated statements since the end of June 2016) no longer had an acquisitive effect in this quarter.
- Most currencies lost ground to the euro in the course of recent months. These evolutions almost neutralized the favorable effects of the first half.