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Monday, July 16, 2007

Cementing the leading position

FE Report
HeidelbergCement Bangladesh Ltd., sold more than one million tonnes of cement in calendar 2006, maintaining the company's market leadership.The leading cement company's sales volume rose to 1,010,478 tonnes in the year ended December 31, 2006 from 816,470 tonnes of the corresponding period of the previous year."Our two brands -- ScanCement and RubyCement -- maintained a leading position in cement market due to high quality and uninterrupted supply that helped achieve a new milestone in sales volume in the year," director of the company Md Ziaul Haque Khondker told the FE Sunday.The company held the 18th annual general meeting (AGM) June 7 and approved a cash dividend at the rate of 16 per cent and stock dividend at the rate of 5.0 per cent against each share for 2006.The cash dividend was 8.0 per cent and stock dividend 10 per cent for 2005.The company's net profit whopped to Tk 521.57 million in 2006 from Tk 148.69 million in the previous year. Earlier, the company incurred losses for two consecutive years in 2004 and 2003."The previous years were somewhat challenging for our shareholders, but 2006 was an exceptional year in the company's history in every way," Daniel Lavalle, (French?)chairman of HeidelbergCement Bangladesh said in the latest annual report.The company's net sales turnover rose to Tk 5.0 billion in 2006 from Tk 3.65 billion in 2005.According to the company's post balance sheet events, sales from January 2007 to March 2007 were 250,090 tonnes against 292,139 tonnes of the previous year.The earning per share soared to Tk 97 in 2006 from Tk 31 in 2005.Commenting on the cement sector's overall situation, managing director of the company, Jean-Claude Jamar said the sector attained a growth of 10.8 per cent in 2006 against an estimate of 8.0 per cent because of delayed monsoon and prompt fund release for the construction projects of the government. Shortage of clinker, frequent power outages and higher freight cost affected the sector in 2006, the annual report pointed out.The company, A-category share, was traded at Tk 1232 against the face value of Tk 100 each Sunday on the DSE. The company, previously known as Chittagong Cement Clinker Grinding Co Ltd., got listed on the DSE in 1989.Later in early 2003, the scheme of amalgamation of Scancement International Ltd., and Scancem Bangladesh Ltd., with Chittagong Cement was approved by the high court.The other listed companies in cement sub-sector on the DSE are Lafarge Surma, Meghna Cement, Niloy Cement, Padma Cement, Confidence Cement, Aramit Cement and Modern Cement.
Good going by Heidelberg, I wonder how Lafarge Surma is playing the catch-up game. Any headway in their legal tussle with Indian authorities?

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