Happy days again.

HeidelbergCement is optimistic for 2010

Published:  30 November, 2009

GERMANY: HeidelbergCement is 'optimistic' for 2010 and 2011 as the construction industry emerges from its worst slump in decades and the company's cost-cutting efforts pay off.

The cement firm also increased its target for savings for 2009 to 500m euros ($738m) from 470m euros.

The company slashed almost 9000 jobs this year and cut its investments to preserve cash. Additional job cuts may follow.

"The company's margin is almost back to pre-crisis levels, it is on a good track," said Marc Gabriel of commercial bank, Bankhaus Lampe in Dusseldorf.

The Heidelberg, German-based company sold 2.5bn euros worth of non-investment grade bonds last month, raising more than double the amount it initially sought. The result is that interest payments will fall by about 250m euros next year due to the reduction in debt.

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