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Lafarge announce 6% rise in Q3 sales

LAFARGE have reported a 6% increase in consolidated net sales to €4.45 billion in the third quarter of 2010, compared with the same period of 2009. However, operating income was down 2% due to inflation of input costs and the impact of lower volumes, partially offset by cost cutting and favourable foreign exchange rates.

Aggregates and concrete sales moved up 7% in the quarter, thanks to volume growth for aggregate products and slower rates of volume decline in the ready-mixed concrete business. As a result of the performance, aggregates and concrete operating profit increased 21% in the third quarter.

Despite a 6% fall in cement sales in the same period, the company maintains its overall growth estimate that cement market demand to be between –1 and +3% in 2010, compared with 2009.

Bruno Lafont, chairman and CEO of Lafarge, commented: ‘Our overall performance held up well in the quarter thanks to the company’s balanced high-quality portfolio and the operational efforts in all our business units. This occurred despite the absence of a significant recovery in developed markets.

‘Moving forward, we will continue to implement our strict financial discipline and expect to benefit from solid volume growth in emerging markets.’  

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