RHI looks optimistically to 2003 (ad hoc)

18. December 2002

The RHI Board shall be submitting an investment budget for 2003 amounting to EUR 48 m to the Supervisory Board on Dec. 19, 2002 for approval. This budget aims to pave the way, particularly in the core refractory business, for expansion and the further optimisation of global business. The position of RHI Refractories as global technology leader will thus be strengthened even further. As part of the investment budget, the Supervisory Council shall also be presented an acquisition project involving European refractories, entailing a growth in sales amounting to EUR 25-30 million.

Altogether, the outlook to 2003 results is favourable. In the core business refractories and in the insulation division, RHI is counting on further improvements in terms of sales and results. Expectations are that the EBIT of the RHI Group will be some 10% higher than in 2002 despite the weak business situation across the globe. RHI estimates that the EBIT in 2002 will exceed EUR 80 million. Prediction are that the annual net profit 2003 will outdo the 2002 level of EUR 40 million by up to 25%.

The marked rise in the annual net profit expected for 2003 is also credited to the further reduction of amounts due to banks and the interest rate, which is comparably lower than in 2002. This has had a positive effect on the financial results.