euro adhoc: Westag & Getalit AG / Quarterly or Semiannual Financial Statements / Clear growth in first half of 2004 despite continued decline in construction activity (E)

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Although a certain number of construction projects were brought forward due to the scheduled reduction in the subsidy for owner-occupied housing, incoming orders in the building construction sector in the first five months of 2004 were down 4.4% on the same period of the previous year, according to the Federal Statistical Office. In this difficult environment, Westag & Getalit AG increased its first-half sales by 4.0% to EUR 84.2 million (previous year EUR 80.9 million). Increased foreign business enabled us to boost our international sales by 9.5% to EUR 14.1 million. Overall, our export share stood at 16.8% (previous year: 15.9%).

The result before income taxes clearly increased over the previous year, reaching a gratifying EUR 3,420 thousand in the first six months of 2004 (previous year: EUR 706 thousand). All three divisions reported a positive sales development and a profit before income taxes. This is not least attributable to the continuation of our strict cost management policy. Net income improved from the previous year’s EUR 407 thousand to EUR 1,890 thousand in H1 2004. Half-year DVFA/SG earnings per share amounted to EUR 0.35 EUR (previous year:
EUR 0.06).

Today's Annual General Meeting in Rheda-Wiedenbrück decided that a dividend of EUR 0.28 per ordinary share (no dividend paid in previous year) and of EUR 0.34 per preference share (previous year: EUR 0.12) be distributed to the shareholders for 2003.

The Supervisory Board has appointed Dipl.-Kfm. Jan Trommershausen, former Spokesman of the management at SaarGummi GmbH, Wadern-Büschfeld, to the Management Board of Westag & Getalit. He will assume responsibility for the central divisions on September 1, 2004.

The general economic environment in Germany remains characterised by uncertainty. A certain downward trend is expected for the construction sector also in the near future. Even though our company is winning market share, we therefore see only few growth opportunities in Germany. There are interesting opportunities on the export front, though. On the cost side, we will generally continue our strict cost-cutting policy. What we are concerned about - apart from continued pressure on sales prices - is the price trend of some of our key commodities. The surge in oil prices is having a direct impact on chemicals products. Should it continue, other raw materials will be affected as well. Westag & Getalit AG will thus be facing further challenges. In view of the recent development of our company, we are confident that we are on the right course also where our profits are concerned.

Further inquiry note:
Felix Huisgen
Tel.: +49 (0)5242 17 5350
Tel: +49 (0)5242 17 0
FAX: +49 (0)5242 17 75000

Emittent: Westag & Getalit AG Hellweg 15 DE-33378 Rheda-Wiedenbrück Tel: +49 (0)5242 17 0 FAX: +49 (0)5242 17 75000 Email: WWW: ISIN: DE0007775207, DE0007775231 WKN: 777520, 777523 Indizes: Prime All Share, Prime Standard Börsen: official dealing Frankfurter Wertpapierbörse; free trade

end of announcement euro adhoc

Berliner Wertpapierbörse, Bremer Wertpapierbörse (BWB), Börse Düsseldorf, Baden-Württembergische Wertpapierbörse
Branche: Building materials
Sprache: Englisch