Growth Belies Decline

01 May 2008

Several of germany's biggest construction companies have posted record results for the first half of 2005 (H1), compared to the same period last year. This growth comes despite continuing recession in the German construction market. Hochtief, Heidelberg Cement and Bilfinger + Berger have all reported strong H1 growth, thanks to their overseas interests.

Hochtief's worldwide operating earnings rose +103,3% from € 82,7 million in H1 2004 to € 168 million this year and operating earnings of the company's Construction Services Europe Division also grew +133% during H1 2005.

Earnings recorded by Heidelberg Cement are also up from € 271 million during the first half of 2004 to € 359 million for the same period this year. According to Heidelberg's chairman Dr Bernd Scheifele, rising demand in northern and eastern Europe, as well as North America, Africa and Asia, has helped counteract falling orders in central and western Europe. “Cement sales in Germany are down -11% on last year and are now at their lowest level since the 1950s,”he said.

Bilfinger + Berger's latest interim report also cites difficulties in the German market. Nonetheless, the company has seen its earning grow to € 31 million during the first half of 2005, up from € 17 million for the same period last year, and attributes the growth to expansion of its business.

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