independent

Thursday 17 April 2014

CRH boss to retire as materials group beats expectations with 2012 results

Myles Lee

Myles Lee, the boss of Ireland’s biggest company, CRH, is to retire at the end of the year.

Mr Lee (60) is a native of Schull, Co Cork, and has been chief executive of the global materials group for the past five years. He joined CRH in 1982.

His retirement was announced this morning as CRH reported full-year results that were better than expected by analysts.

It said that revenue during 2012 rose 3pc to €18.6bn, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) slipped 1pc to €1.64bn.

CRH generates the bulk of its turnover and profits in the US and Europe, although it has small interests in India and China.

The full-year EBITDA figure was 2pc ahead of forecasts by Davy Stockbrokers and also better than what CRH said last November that it hoped to achieve.

Davy Stockbrokers said this morning that it will probably have to upgrade its current €1.66bn profit forecast for CRH in 2013 by about 5pc.

“Results for 2012 reflect progress from CRH's Americas operations helped by a strong recovery in residential construction and improving overall economic activity in the United States,” said Mr Lee. “In contrast, our European businesses had to contend with weakening consumer and investor confidence within the Eurozone.”

Shares in CRH were trading up slightly at the open, at €16.34 in Dublin.

The company has also said it has agreed an asset swap in Spain. It will transfer its 26pc stake in Corporacion Uniland to CPV, while CPV will transfer its 99pc stake in Cementos Lemona to CRH. The two companies have also agreed to terminate on-going legal disputes between them.

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