Heavy Clay

Ibstock sees rapid growth


Clay business recorded higher than expected sales volumes in the first six months of 2021, with a revenue of £138 million, 60% higher than the previous year

Ibstock, one of the UK’s largest manufacturers of construction products listed on the London Stock Exchange, reported outstanding performances in both its clay and concrete divisions in the six months ended 30 June 2021.

Operations in the period were buoyed by a robust recovery in demand, which drove group revenues up 54% compared to the first six months of 2020 to £202 million (€234 million), only slightly below the results achieved in 2019 (£203 million). Adjusted EBITDA jumped to £55 million from £10 in 2020, while the pre-tax profit of £39 million marked a strong recovery compared to the £52 million loss of the first half of 2020.

Clay division records higher than expected sales volumes: divisional revenue totalled £138 million (68.3% of total revenue), 60% higher than the previous year (£87 million) and accounting for 92% of the revenue reported for the first half of 2019.

In response to the positive outlook for demand, Ibstock is currently commissioning the enhancement project at the Leicester Soft Mud 2 factory and over the next 9-12 months will commission the other enhancement projects at the Ellistown and Laybrook factories. Together, these will add around a further 5% of network capacity, meaning that around 95% of 2019 volume levels are expected to be available from the middle of 2022. Looking further ahead, the redevelopment of the Group’s wire cut brick facilities in the West Midlands will deliver a significant capacity expansion when they come on stream from early 2024.

“The £60 million investment in the redevelopment of our clay brick facilities in the West Midlands will expand our capacity significantly from early 2024, consolidating our leadership position in the clay brick market,” announced Hudson. “It will also demonstrate our commitment to leading our industry on sustainability issues, producing the UK’s first net-zero carbon bricks, an innovation that is already generating significant customer interest.”

Read the full article published in Brick World Review 2-2021