ECONOMY

Rise in sales, drop in profits for blue chips in 2018

rise-in-sales-drop-in-profits-for-blue-chips-in-2018

The 25 companies that make up the FTSE 25 large-cap index at Athinon Avenue recorded an increase in sales last year – mainly thanks to a robust second half – and a decline in their operating and net profits because of one-off negative results for several blue chip companies, according to data Beta Securities has prepared for Kathimerini.

The 25 blue chips’ total sales came to 52.35 billion euros in 2018, against 48.09 billion in 2017, or an 8.8 percent annual increase. A big part of that increase was down to energy companies such as Hellenic Petroleum, whose sales rose 30 percent, and Motor Oil, which was up 24 percent. Viohalco, Piraeus Port Authority and GEK Terna also recorded impressive sales growth, of 18 percent, 19 percent and 18 percent year-on-year respectively.

Beta’s chief analyst Manos Hatzidakis notes that July-December sales (up 11.5 percent year-on-year) were stronger than those in the first half, cementing the trend for the entire year.

In contrast, operating results showed a combined decline of 8.9 percent, from 6.83 billion euros in 2017 to 6.22 billion in 2018, bringing the operating profit margin down from 14.2 to 11.9 percent.

On a net profit level banks made a positive contribution after a long time (about 240 million euros), bringing the final result to 1.68 billion euros, down 10 percent on 2017.