February 26, 2009 02:37 ET


BARCELONA, SPAIN--(Marketwire - February 26, 2009) - - Abertis' main financial indicators remained stable in relation to 2007, reflecting the success of its policy of geographic and sector diversification which offset the impact of the current economic situation on the Group's results:

Revenues of EUR 3,679Mn (+1.6%).

EBITDA of EUR 2,256Mn (-0.6%).

Net Profit of EUR 618Mn (-9.4%).

Net Cash Flow of EUR 1,417Mn (-0.3%).

Total investment of EUR 1,704Mn.

- The earnings include a one-off negative impact of EUR 29Mn due to tax reform in the UK. Stripping out this effect, net profit would be EUR 648Mn (-5.1%).

- Expansion capex totalled over EUR 1,400Mn in 2008 (toll roads in Chile, DCA, Hispasat) with Abertis pressing ahead with its strategy of geographic and sector diversification and consolidating and strengthening its positions in existing assets.

- With all expansion activities fully financed, the Group maintains a solid debt structure. 89% of total debt is long term; 78% of this is at fixed rates or fixed through hedging and 57% is non-recourse. The cost of the debt is 5%.

- The Board of Directors of Abertis has called a General Shareholders' Meeting on 31 March.

- Also, the Board of Directors has resolved to propose at the General Shareholders' Meeting a gross final dividend charged against 2008 earnings of EUR 0.30 per share plus a 1-for-20 scrip issue. Maximum total dividend payments amount to EUR 402.2Mn in 2008, an increase of 12.5% respect to 2007 if the effect of the scrip issue is taken into account.

- The Abertis Board of Directors has approved the appointment of Ricard Fornesa, chairman of Criteria Caixa Corp, as a new board member of Abertis Infraestructuras, S.A.

- Toll road revenues remained stable with respect to 2007 while traffic on the entire Abertis network continued the decline seen throughout the year, dropping 3.6%. The reduction in traffic is explained by the economic slowdown and one-off factors, such as the lorry drivers' strike in the first half of the year and the initial impact of the opening of alternative toll-free roads.

Revenues reached EUR 2,756Mn.

Average Daily Traffic (ADT) on the abertis network worldwide was 25,697 vehicles (-3.6%).

On sanef's network (53% of abertis' total network), ADT was 23,741 vehicles (-1.6%), while GCO (Argentina) reported a figure of 71,210 vehicles (+4.8%). In Spain ADT was 26,329 vehicles, a decline of 6.6%. Stripping out the impact of the alternative toll-free roads opened in the aumar network, the decline in traffic in the entire abertis network was 2.5%.

- In 2008 the strong performance of its telecommunications infrastructures, airports, logistics parks and car parks businesses underpinned the strength and stability of the Group's financial indicators.

abertis telecom had revenues of EUR 431Mn (+9%). The rollout of Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) by abertis telecom in Spain stood at 92.4% of the population (over 42 million people) at 31 December 2008.

The satellite sector fared well, reflecting positive trends in the main indicators of both Eutelsat (revenue growth of 7.9% in the first half to 31 December 2008) and Hispasat (revenue growth of 7.2% in 2008). Eutelsat, consolidated using the equity method, contributed EUR 54Mn in 2008, while Hispasat, consolidated using proportionate consolidation since 1 July, contributed EUR 10Mn. In all, the satellite business had a net positive effect (including the financing costs of the acquisitions) on the profits of abertis.

Passenger traffic at tbi airports increased 3.6% to 24.5Mn. Revenues at abertis airports remained in line with 2007 revenues at EUR 301Mn. The earnings of the airports business include a one-off negative impact of EUR 29Mn due to the effect of tax reform in the UK.

Revenues at saba, abertis' car parks division, reached EUR 135Mn (+3%) with 52 million vehicles in rotation (stable vs. 2007) and a 3.9% increase in pass holders. The number of spaces grew by 11.2%.

Positive performance by abertis logística. Revenues amounted to EUR 44Mn (+105.7%), with a warehouse and office occupancy rate of 90.3% vs. 85.7% in 2007.

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