Source - Alliance News

RHI Magnesita NV on Wednesday reported growth in its revenue and earnings, but the company’s outlook remained meek as customer demand dropped to historic lows.

RHI is a Vienna-headquartered manufacturer of refractory products for the processing of steel, glass, and non-ferrous metals, with around 50 production sites located globally.

RHI’s 2023 revenue was €3.57 billion, up 7.7% from €3.32 billion a year prior.

The company said that revenue growth was primarily driven by contributions from the six acquisitions it completed over the year, which offset a demand-driven decline in sales volumes. RHI said that its acquisition strategy focused on ‘complementary product areas and geographies in which we are under-represented’.

The company noted two acquisitions made in India during the year, of great strategic importance given ‘the unique growth environment for refractories in this region’. It added that these have ‘substantially improved’ the company’s regional footprint, and improved its export opportunities in West Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation were up 8.6% to €542.8 million from €499.5 million in 2022.

Adjusted earnings per share rose 3.3% to €4.98 from €4.82.

Pretax profit was €233.3 million for the year, down 14% from €270.5 million in 2022.

The company has recommended a final dividend of €1.25 per share, subject to approval at its annual general meeting on May 2. This brings its full-year dividend to €1.80, up from €1.60 in 2022.

However, Chief Executive Officer Stefan Borgas said: ‘During a period of historic low demand from customers and low raw material prices, RHIM has demonstrated good resilience’.

RHI said that its key construction and transportation markets ‘remain subdued’ in all geographies except India.

The company has taken pre-emptive measures to improve its margins in the face of a predictably challenging year, and said that it remains well-positioned for a recovery once customer demand resumes.

The company anticipates delivering around €410 million in adjusted earnings before interest, tax and amortisation in 2024, compared to €408.9 million in 2023.

Acquisitions completed since January 2023 are also expected to contribute around €80 million to adjusted Ebitda in 2024.

Shares in RHI were up 2.7% at 3,686.00 pence each in London on Wednesday.

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