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Titan Cement First-Quarter Loss Widens as Construction Slows

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May 3 (Bloomberg) -- Titan Cement Co SA, Greece’s biggest producer of the building material, posted a wider first quarter loss as the country’s construction industry slowed and bad weather conditions hit the Balkans, Turkey and Greece.

The net loss was 19.4 million euros ($25.5 million) in the three months through March 31, compared with a 4.3 million-euro loss in the same period a year earlier, according to a statement from the Athens-based company today.

“The severe and extended winter period this year across the Balkans, Turkey and Greece significantly affected building activity in these regions,” the company said.

Sales declined to 225.4 million euros from 252.9 million euros. Revenue from the Greek market dropped 37 percent to 46 million euros.

Demand in Greece is expected to mark a “further substantial decline” in 2012, Titan said. Public and private building activity in Greece, now in its fifth year of recession, fell 23 percent in the 12-month period through January 2012, according to the Hellenic Statistical Authority. The figure is measured by the number of permits issued.

The company said it sees sales in southeastern Europe advancing this year and is “cautiously optimistic” about demand in Egypt.

To contact the reporter on this story: Natalie Weeks in Athens at nweeks2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jerrold Colten at jcolten@bloomberg.net