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LafargeHolcim Touts North American Growth in Third Quarter

LafargeHolcim reported a year-over-year net sales decrease of 3.0% in the third quarter. However Jan Jenisch, CEO, said, “This is the fifth consecutive quarter of over-proportional growth in profitability and we are on track to achieve all targets for 2019. I would like to congratulate all employees for executing Strategy 2022 with high speed and impressive results.

"Our financial discipline is generating value and we are making significant progress in cash conversion and in deleveraging our balance sheet. We expect the positive dynamics to continue into the fourth quarter and we are confident that we will deliver a strong full-year performance and achieve a new level of balance sheet strength.

"We have further strengthened our sustainability efforts with the appointment of the first chief sustainability officer to the executive committee. We are accelerating our vision of running our operations with zero harm to people and contributing to a built environment that will be carbon-neutral, fully recyclable and have a positive environmental impact,” Jenisch concluded.

North America achieved strong results, with good volume growth in all business segments. Positive price momentum and easing cost inflation further supported profitable growth in the United States, while there was a softer market environment in Canada.

The Europe region had another very strong quarter, with good market demand across the region. Further margin improvement was driven by positive price momentum and operational efficiency. The UK market was resilient despite signs of weaker market demand due to current political uncertainty.

The Latin America region stabilized in the third quarter of 2019, with good performance in Colombia and cement volume growth in Brazil. Markets in Mexico and Ecuador were softer while effective cost and price management partially mitigated these challenges.

The Asia Pacific region showed strong margin improvement in the quarter. The good progress in India was driven by price and easing cost inflation despite softer demand. Effective turnaround initiatives supported resilient performance in Australia. China continued to deliver another positive contribution in the third quarter.

Ongoing turnaround efforts in the Middle East Africa region partially offset a challenging environment in key markets. While difficult market conditions persist in Algeria and Egypt, there were performance improvements in South Africa, Iraq and Jordan.