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Thu April 22 2021

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Breedon profits cut in half

10 Mar Breedon Group has posted revenues for 2020 largely unchanged from the previous year but profit before tax was down 49%.

Breedon chief executive Pat Ward retires at the end of this month
Breedon chief executive Pat Ward retires at the end of this month

Breedon made a pre-tax profit of £48.1m in 2020 (2019: £94.6m) on revenue of £928.7m (£929.6m).

Like-for-like sales were down 6% due to the impact of Covid-19 but this was offset by the benefit of the acquisition of £178m-worth of plants and quarries from Cemex on 31st July.

Volumes from July onwards were generally strong, Breedon reports, especially in aggregates and asphalt, which benefited from recovering infrastructure investment. Later in the year, as housing demand strengthened, ready-mixed concrete also picked up the pace.

Although major contracts were limited for most of the year, Breedon began to ship significant volumes of aggregates to enabling works on HS2. The supply and lay contract on the A9 in Scotland resumed in late July, with substantial volumes of asphalt and concrete base laid and two-thirds of the project completed by the year-end. Breedon also supplied high specification concrete to the Atomic Weapons Establishment at Burghfield, near Reading.

Chairman Amit Bhatia said: “The Cemex acquisition significantly expands our footprint in the UK, giving us an additional 170 million tonnes of reserves and resources and accelerates our asphalt growth strategy, enabling us to commence expanding our contracting operations which are an increasingly important route to market for our products. These are outstanding assets and our management is already improving their performance and extracting the substantial value we see in them.”

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As previously reported, Pat Ward stands down as chief executive and from the board at the end of March 2021 after five years in the job. He is retiring and re-joining his family in the USA. Rob Wood, finance director for the past seven years, takes his place.  

Breedon's 2020

21.7 million tonnes of aggregates sold (2019: 20.2 million tonnes)

3.3 million tonnes of asphalt sold (2019: 3.0 million tonnes)

2.6 million cubic metres of ready-mixed concrete sold (2019: 3.0 million cubic metres)

2.0 million tonnes of cement sold (2019: 2.0 million tonnes)

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