Carib Cement Q1 profit triples

After several years of underperformance, Jamaica’s sole cement producer – Caribbean Cement is reporting record profits of $1.53 billion, an increase of 216 percent from $483 million in 2020 from a 31 percent increase in revenues to $5.97 billion for the quarter ending March 2021, over the 2020 corresponding period. 
The strong quarterly performance follows an excellent December 2020 quarter when profit jumped sharply to $962 million from $310 million in 2019.
Direct production cost rose 15 percent from $2.7 billion in 2020 to $3.1 billion, as a result, gross profit jumped 54 percent to $2.88 billion from $1.88 billion in 2020, resulting in profit margin rising 48 percent from 27 percent in 2020.
Other operating expenses fell 10 percent from $651 million to $582 million in the quarter. Finance cost declined in the quarter, from $164 million to $162 million. Foreign exchange losses slipped to $209 million for the quarter from $281 million in the previous year’s corresponding period.
The company continues to enjoy a healthy cash flow and ended with $755 million in cash funds at the end of the quarter after pulling in $3.3 billion in gross cash inflows and after paying $953 million in corporate taxes and repaying $1.9 billion in connection with loans.
At the end of March, loans outstanding amount to $4.8 billion, while shareholders’ equity amounts to $13 billion up from $8.8 billion at the end of March 2020.
Current assets ended the period at $4.1 billion up from $3.1 billion at the end of March 2020. Trade receivables ended at $404 million from $450 million last year march while inventories stood at $2.7 billion up from $21 billion at the end of the 2020 first quarter. Current liabilities rounded out the quarter at $7.3 billion compared to $4.9 billion at the end of the 2020 first quarter.
Earnings per share came out at $1.79, up from 57 cents in 2020. IC is forecasting around $8.50 per share for the year with the PE currently at 12.5 times 2021 earnings.
The stock last traded at $75 on the Main Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange on Wednesday and is projected to get to $150 in the next twelve months.

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