“Our 2018 performance demonstrates the group’s transformation of recent years, which is delivering progressively superior returns,” Group CEO Tony Smurfit noted. “This creates the platform for success in 2019 and beyond. The group delivered on or exceeded its key measures. EBITDA of €1,545 million is materially better than 2017, representing a 25% increase, with a corresponding EBITDA margin of 17.3%. Our European business performed very strongly in 2018 with underlying revenue growth of 7%. This was driven by a combination of demand growth, input cost recovery and the benefits of our investment program.
“The Americas region had underlying revenue growth of 8% and our business continued to improve as the year progressed with particularly strong performances in our major markets of Mexico and Colombia,” he added. “Across the region, we have seen progress in input cost recovery, demand growth and, as with our European business, the benefits of our investment plans.”