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HOCHTIEF right on track: Significantly improved profits and cash flow

HOCHTIEF AG has issued a press release recaping the Group's business in 2014 and future outlooks. HOCHTIEF has completed a successful year that saw important changes in the business portfolio. “We have substantially strengthened the balance sheet and enhanced earnings quality, thus creating the basis for a sustained improvement of returns,” said Chairman of the Executive Board Marcelino Fernández Verdes. “The figures illustrate that HOCHTIEF has improved significantly in its core business.” Adjusted for one-off items (such as disposals of activities and restructuring expenses), operational net profit thus went up by 46% to EUR 252 million (2013: EUR 173 million). This is above the top end of our guidance range of between EUR 225 million and EUR 250 million. All divisions contributed to this increase.

Operational earnings before taxes grew by 16% to EUR 644 million (2013: EUR 557 million).

The Group also significantly improved Free operational Cash Flow by more than EUR 500 million to EUR 322 million. Including the disposal proceeds from Australia, HOCHTIEF shows a net cash position—of EUR 421 million—for the first time since 2010.

Orders and work done likewise developed well in 2014. Post divestments new orders, at EUR 21.5 billion (2013: EUR 21.9 billion), stayed at a solid level. New orders in the HOCHTIEF Americas and HOCHTIEF Europe divisions showed strong increases on a like-for-like basis, by 36% and 18% respectively. Work done, at EUR 24.3 billion, stayed on a constantly high level (2013: EUR 24.6 billion). Order backlog remains stable at EUR 35.7 billion and corresponds to 19 months work. The Group generated sales of EUR 22.1 billion (2013: EUR 22.5 billion).

HOCHTIEF continued to successfully deliver on strategy. Alongside strengthening the balance sheet, its strategy is focused on the core businesses of construction, contract mining, public-private partnership (PPP), and engineering. HOCHTIEF’s objective is to become a market and technology leader in its target markets in order to develop the Group into the most relevant infrastructure construction group driven by sustainable, profitable growth.

You can find the entire press release here.