NIEUWEGEIN, The Netherlands, April 29, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Situation in the first quarter of 2011
Ballast Nedam has got off to a solid start this year. Not only have we introduced a cluster structure with the aim of improving Ballast Nedam's capacity to provide integrated solutions, but we have also achieved sound operating results.
Already we have seen the first favourable examples of improved application of the knowledge, experience and capacities available in various business units in the tender phase of a project. All this has been taking place in a market that shows an unchanged profile of intensive competition and depressed price levels for both property and infrastructure. In the coming months we do not expect this market picture to change. This only makes it more important that Ballast Nedam should focus on integrated projects and niche markets such as industrial construction, hospitals, offshore wind turbines and alternative fuels.
In these challenging market conditions, Ballast Nedam has been able to maintain an order book of EUR1.8 billion. The rapid sale of two property development projects with a total of 129 houses in Vleuten and the takeover of construction firm Heddes made a positive contribution to this achievement. Heddes Bouw & Ontwikkeling recently reached agreement with the municipal authorities in Hoorn on continuing the building of De Kreek, a multifunctional accommodation project consisting of a primary school, a library, a community centre, a sports hall and a play room for pre-school children.
The turnover and results achieved in the first quarter were approximately in line with those achieved in the first quarter of 2010. This puts Ballast Nedam firmly on track to meet the results forecasts for 2011.
The major projects in both infrastructure and building & development booked encouraging results, while the results of the regional companies suffered to a certain extent. The major projects were mainly to be found in the niche markets of industrial construction, hospitals and offshore wind turbines. The performance of the specialized companies lived up to our expectations. Within supplies, the contribution made by the raw materials companies was good and the results of the prefab companies continued to be adversely affected by a shrinking market.
The need for operating capital is greater during the year than at the end of the year. This explains why the net financing position fell by EUR96 million in the first quarter to EUR326 million. This included the sum of EUR48 million in net cash.
Forecast remains unchanged for 2011
The Board of Management is maintaining its March 2011 forecast for an operating result of EUR15 million to EUR20 million. The expected turnover has been adjusted upwards slightly, holding steady at approximately EUR1.4 billion, due to the contribution of Heddes Bouw & Ontwikkeling.
The outcome of claims on a number of projects, together with possible appeal rulings in old competition proceedings, may have an effect on the result in the rest of the year.
Ballast Nedam has a leading position in construction and infrastructure. The company operates mainly in the Netherlands on integrated and other projects for companies, public authorities and housing consumers, in the fields of mobility, housing, employment, leisure and energy. Ballast Nedam operates internationally in various areas of expertise. Ballast Nedam supplies project, process and contract management in the development, implementation and management phases. The company also provides specialized know-how and skills, and semi-finished and finished products. Ballast Nedam is listed on NYSE Euronext in Amsterdam. The share is included in the Amsterdam Small Cap Index.
SOURCE Ballast Nedam NV