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Primer trimestre de Argos refleja compromiso con aportar a la reactivación de la economía, la generación de empleo y la creación de valor social

  • Durante el ejercicio, Cementos Argos concretó importantes hitos en términos de sostenibilidad, siguió invirtiendo en Colombia con la expansión del puerto y la planta de Cartagena, sumando 194 empleos directos e indirectos y profundizando su apoyo a la cadena de más de 1.700 proveedores medianos y pequeños en el país.
  • En el primer trimestre de 2021, la compañía presentó mejoras en sus resultados en términos de ingresos y ebitda.
  • Despachos de cemento se favorecieron por una sólida demanda en todos los mercados y una menor base de comparación en Colombia y Caribe y Centroamérica.
  • Volúmenes de concreto se vieron impactados, principalmente, por una recuperación más lenta en Colombia y Caribe y Centroamérica y condiciones climáticas en Estados Unidos.
  • Disminución de deuda y desempeño operativo favorecieron la reducción del nivel de apalancamiento. 

 

Trimestre de avances clave

 

Durante los primeros tres meses de 2021, los ingresos consolidados de Argos, empresa de cemento del Grupo Argos, fueron de 2,3 billones de pesos y su ebitda de 445.000 millones de pesos. Asimismo, y gracias a una mejor dinámica en todos los mercados donde opera y a una menor base de comparación en Colombia y Caribe y Centroamérica, los volúmenes de cemento alcanzaron los 4,1 millones de toneladas, lo que representa un incremento del 19 %. Por su parte, los despachos de concreto totalizaron 2 millones de metros cúbicos, con una disminución del 4,4 %, originada, principalmente, por condiciones climáticas en Estados Unidos y una recuperación más lenta de la construcción formal en Colombia y en países de Caribe y Centroamérica.

 

Igualmente, en el ejercicio, Cementos Argos siguió invirtiendo en Colombia con la expansión del puerto y la planta de Cartagena, sumando 194 empleos directos e indirectos y profundizando su apoyo a la cadena de más de 1.700 proveedores medianos y pequeños en el país.

 

Del mismo modo, lanzó Soluciones Verdes, un portafolio compuesto por innovadores recursos, servicios y productos que contribuyen al desarrollo de proyectos más respetuosos con el medioambiente, materializó un préstamo por 160.000 millones cuya tasa de interés está basada en el desempeño ambiental, social y de gobierno corporativo (ESG, por sus siglas en inglés) y actualizó su estrategia de cambio climático, en la cual se compromete a reducir sus emisiones de CO2 en un 29 % a 2030 y a ofrecer concreto carbono neutro a 2050.

 

“En Argos estamos comprometidos con seguir aportándole valor social a nuestro país; por eso, continuamos invirtiendo en Colombia y estamos innovando todos los días para ayudar a materializar, de la mano de nuestros clientes, los sueños de vivienda y una mejor infraestructura para todos los colombianos. Los resultados del trimestre en sostenibilidad, generación de empleo, dinámica comercial, avance en los programas de eficiencia y competitividad, generación de caja y desapalancamiento fueron satisfactorios y obedecieron al compromiso, la mística y el sentido de trascendencia de nuestros más de 7.200 colaboradores”.

Juan Esteban Calle

Presidente  

 

Por regiones:

 

En la Regional Estados Unidos, los ingresos permanecieron estables y se ubicaron en USD 349 millones, mientras que mayores eficiencias impulsaron el ebitda a USD 50 millones. Los volúmenes de cemento totalizaron 1,4 millones de toneladas, lo que significa un incremento de 3,1 % frente al mismo periodo de 2020. Estos estuvieron impulsados por la positiva dinámica de la construcción de bodegas y centros de distribución que continúa soportando la demanda de cemento. Por su parte, los volúmenes de concreto disminuyeron 6,9 %, impactados, especialmente, por una tormenta en Texas y un aumento de las lluvias en las Carolinas.

 

El contexto macroeconómico en el país sigue siendo favorable con relación al sector de la construcción gracias al desempeño del segmento residencial. En infraestructura, se resalta que recientemente el gobierno federal anunció una propuesta denominada American Jobs Plan, que incluye una inversión de USD 2 billones durante los próximos ocho años. Después de 12 a 18 meses de su aprobación, este plan podría apalancar un incremento en la demanda de cemento durante los próximos 8 a 10 años.

  

En la Regional Colombia, mejores volúmenes y precios estables permitieron aumentar los ingresos con respecto al mismo periodo del año anterior, los cuales se ubicaron en 603.000 millones de pesos. Lo anterior, sumado a menores costos de mantenimiento, llevó a un incremento en el ebitda, que se ubicó en 145.000 millones de pesos. Los despachos de cemento fueron de 1,2 millones de toneladas, con un incremento de 19,4 %, beneficiados por una baja base de comparación. Por su lado, los de concreto, fueron de 572.000 metros cúbicos, 3,3 % superiores a los del mismo trimestre del año anterior, pero aún por debajo a los de 2019.

 

En estos primeros tres meses, el mercado en general mantuvo la dinámica positiva evidenciada desde septiembre de 2020 en términos de volumen y el segmento masivo continuó liderando la recuperación de la industria. Por su parte, la construcción formal sigue su senda de recuperación, impulsada por un aumento en las iniciaciones de vivienda y estabilidad en la ejecución de proyectos de infraestructura.

 

En la Regional Caribe y Centroamérica, se reporta un incremento en los ingresos debido a mayores volúmenes de cemento, así como un ebitda de USD 41 millones, superior al del mismo periodo de 2020. La dinámica de autoconstrucción y signos de recuperación en Panamá impulsaron mayores despachos de cemento, que se ubicaron en 1,4 millones de toneladas, un 21,4 % más. Los despachos de concreto, por su parte, disminuyeron 13,7 % año a año como resultado de un menor ritmo de recuperación del segmento industrial.

 

En cuanto a la dinámica del mercado, se estima un mejor desempeño del segmento industrial en el mediano plazo, debido a algunos planes de los gobiernos locales de impulsar la recuperación económica a través de la infraestructura.

 

“La salud y seguridad de nuestros colaboradores, así como la generación de empleo y la creación de valor social, continúan siendo nuestras mayores prioridades para este 2021. Estamos convencidos de que en Argos somos parte de la solución y seguiremos trabajando cada día con optimismo, empatía y esperanza para contribuir a hacer realidad el mejor país y la sociedad más equitativa que todos soñamos”, puntualizó Juan Esteban.

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PIEDAD MONSALVE

Gerente de Comunicaciones
pmonsalve@argos.com.co
(57 4) 3198700

DANIELA VALLE

Directora de Comunicaciones
dvalle@argos.com.co

Atmospheric emissions

We are committed to reducing our emissions through actions that achieve more efficient processes and the implementation of abatement measures, contributing to good air quality in the places where we operate.  Our cement-, concrete- and aggregate-production processes generate punctual and scattered particulate matter (PM) emissions, as well as emissions of sulfur oxides (SO2) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) in the clinkering furnaces of the cement plants.

  • For society:  To contribute to mitigating the impact on air quality in the areas where we operate, acting responsibly and promoting relationships of trust with our Stakeholders.

 

  • For the company:  To develop more efficient processes that allow us to reduce our atmospheric emissions and contribute to responsible production, complying with local regulations in the countries where we operate and – in some cases – going beyond compliance with said regulations, contributing to the profitability of the business and preparing to face future challenges.

The “Emissions” pillar of our Environmental Strategy focuses on: Working on the adequate measurement, control and reduction of SO2, NOx and particulate-material (PM) emissions generated by our production processes in the cement business and on the prevention and mitigation of our dispersed emissions of particulate material (dust), originated mainly by the activities of transportation, transfer, unloading and storage of materials in the cement, concrete and aggregate processes. The foregoing, through operational control, optimization and renewal of emission-control systems to achieve continuous improvement.

Industry positioning

We position ourselves as strategic allies for the development of the territories where we are present, directly and through the empowerment of our value chain.  We do it through the construction of housing and sustainable infrastructure that enables the closing of socioeconomic gaps, the generation of employment, the improvement of the quality of life and the reduction of the impacts generated.

  • For society:  To sustainably respond to the growing demand for housing and infrastructure of the world population with the aim of improving people’s quality of life, interconnecting regions and developing innovative solutions. 

 

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    For the company:  To be strategic allies of the actors in our value chain in order to maintain the Company’s leadership in the market, ensure its competitiveness over time and increase the generation of sustainable value.

We are committed to the role we have as a Company in the achievement of the 2030 Agenda goals, the consolidation of territorial development plans where we operate, and the economic reactivation of the countries affected by the pandemic. Therefore, we focus our efforts in the development of sustainable housing and infrastructure projects that contribute to closing socioeconomic gaps, generating employment under safe conditions, environmental protection, and investment in improving people’s health systems and quality of life. 

Our work unfolds in three large lines:

 

Cities for everyone:

 

With nearly 54% of the world  population living in urban areas, the pandemic made inequality of those who live in the cities of the world

manifest. Nearly 90% of the COVID-19 cases are concentrated in the urban

centers that have, among others, challenges associated with access to basic services and decent housing conditions. For this reason, we work together with our value chain to develop projects that benefit the lessfavored population, facilitate access to housing, and promote development in

the areas of influence.

 

Interconnected cities

 

The need to connect urban areas with rural areas to expand the coverage

of basic services, such as health, has been a priority of developing countries

since before the pandemic. Therefore, during 2020, we continued working on creating innovative solutions that allow us to be present in the large projects of the countries and territories where we are present.

 

Intelligent cities

 

In recent years, the acuteness of the effects of climate change became the

risk of greatest impact to the world. Therefore, in the global stage, a need

has grown to transition to a low-carbon economy, an opportunity that becomes more relevant amid post-pandemic recovery scenarios and the effort we are making as a Company to generate new business models that respond to environmental and social challenges. For this reason, our Climate-Change Strategy includes actions aimed at mitigating the impacts associated with our productive processes, adapting our operating model and innovating from the identification of optimization opportunities.

Supplier management

Supplier management is a fundamental pillar of our Supply Chain Strategy; it seeks to build and strengthen relationships with strategic allies who have the ability to contribute to the Company in terms of efficiency, productivity, customer service and innovation.  For this reason, we carefully select our suppliers, transfer knowledge to promote their development, promote good practices and recognize those who are an example of sustainable, innovative, safe and responsible management.

  • For society:  To develop our suppliers, promote transparent practices and responsible conduct, to improve the productivity and competitiveness of our society and support the construction of a better future.

 

  • For the company:  To seek to add value throughout the Company’s supply chain, from the purchase of goods and services to the delivery of products to clients.  Through the mitigation of risks and potentiation of opportunities, the implementation of good contracting practices and service excellence, we create relationships of trust and turn suppliers into business allies.

Our management is divided into five stages:

  1. Identification: We determine the goods and services required for our operation and the category to which they belong, according to our Category Tree. This groups our suppliers into macro-categories which – in turn – are subdivided into two more specific levels.
  2. Pre-Selection: We validate the suitability of suppliers through due diligence and review aspects of sustainability and financial health to ensure long-term relationships.
  3. Negotiation: We select suppliers with high standards, considering technical, economic, sustainability and service aspects.
  4. Retention and evaluation: We carry out knowledge-transfer processes with those suppliers with growth potential.
    • We characterize our suppliers as critical suppliers or with potential risk in sustainability.
    • We measure the management of critical suppliers through performance evaluations in terms of quality, service, occupational health and safety, having constant feedback and identifying key factors for their development.
    • We apply the Sustainability Index to suppliers with potential sustainability risks, to identify challenges, opportunities, and to develop joint action plans in environmental, economic, social and Human-Rights matters.
    • We implement additional controls and development plans to suppliers belonging to categories where the greatest potential risks have been identified. This is how, for example, we develop road-safety strategies for our logistics suppliers; with mining suppliers, we carry out a more rigorous pre-selection process, and with contractors, we have special controls on occupational health and safety.
    • We have a Transparency Line for Stakeholders to report possible improper actions and to implement the pertinent corrective actions. 
  5. Recognition:  Every two years, through Growing Together (Creciendo Juntos), we recognize the suppliers that have shown outstanding performance in innovation, sustainability, health and safety and development and comprehensiveness.

 

Additionally, we have:

 

Contracting manual: transparent action framework that guides the negotiation and contracting of our suppliers to allow the process to be agile, make use of best practices and carry out adequate risk management.

 

Code of conduct for suppliers: in which we define the principles and behaviors that we expect from our allies in terms of respect for human rights, protection of workers, environmental management, business ethics and responsible business practices.

Ethics and compliance

We are convinced that ethics and integrity are fundamental and non-negotiable; that is why we live by these principles, integrating them into our operations, processes, and strategy, thus generating value responsibly for our business, our Stakeholders, and for society.  Through the Global Governance and Compliance Program, our ethics and business conduct system, we seek to promote that our actions are consistent with the pillars of corporate culture and integrity as the guiding principle of our business activity.

  • For society:  To promote transparent, competitive, and sustainable business environments that strengthen trust and ethics in business, generating positive impacts for the market and society.

 

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    For the company:  To promote that our actions are consistent with the pillars of culture and that integrity is the inspiring principle of all members of the Organization.  This is how we consolidate ourselves as a competitive, reliable company in the eyes of investors and other Stakeholders.

We have voluntarily adopted a self-regulatory framework that confirms our commitment to business ethics as a way to promote transparent practices that contribute to the development of competitive environments. This framework* incorporates mandatory principles of ethics and conduct:

 

 

For the proper implementation and application of these guidelines, the strengthening of the ethical culture, the prevention and control of incorrect actions, our Board of Directors approved the Global Governance and Compliance Program (GGCP, in Spanish). The program structure incorporates international best practices to evaluate compliance programs, such as ISO 37001, ISO 19600 and the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) guidelines. The program has the following scope:

 

 

Likewise, it systematically groups together the activities carried out to promote integrity in the Company’s actions, its employees, and members

of the value chain, which allow the updating and permanent strengthening

of the program. Operating Scheme:

 

Efficiency and productivity

We materialize our Corporate Strategy through actions aimed at the efficient use of resources, the improvement of our financial flexibility and the maximization of income generation and business profitability.  We focus on the application of efficient, safe production processes and circular economy models, on the diversification of energy management models and on the efficient management of the supply chain.

  • For society:  To provide solutions and products that meet the needs of our clients through the responsible, appropriate use of resources and the incorporation of raw materials and alternative energy sources.

 

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    For the company:  To guarantee business sustainability, optimize working capital and capital investments, reduce costs and the level of indebtedness, and mitigate risks regarding the availability of resources necessary for our operation and the emergence of new business realities, environmental requirements and new regulations.

Creamos valor construyendo relaciones sólidas que transforman el futuro de la sociedad

Creamos valor a través de nuestro compromiso con el desarrollo responsable y transparente de nuestras actividades.