In thefirst nine months of 2018, Sonae continued to deliver a solid set of resultsacross its portfolio of businesses. Consolidated turnover growth stood at 7%year-on-year, with positive contributions from all business units, andunderlying EBITDA increased 3.5% to 233 million euros. Net income grew 50% to200 million euros driven by a strong increase in indirect income.
In thethird quarter, Sonae MC continues to be worth highlighting, both due to thestrong turnover growth and to profitability stabilizing at benchmark levels.During this period, the reorganization of participations and restructuring ofthe new perimeter of this business unit was completed, achieving the objectivesof autonomy and agility, and allowing it to operate with a governance modelfully aligned with the best practices of listed companies. Unfortunately, Sonaechose in October to withdraw its intention to float Sonae MC, due toparticularly adverse market conditions.
Equallyrelevant and also in this quarter, Sonae completed the 20% stake acquisition ofSonae Sierra, an important milestone to increase the international profile ofthe group by reinforcing its participation and influence over this leadingplayer in the retail real estate sector. Notwithstanding this acquisition andthe consolidation of Sonae Sierra’s balance sheet, Sonae continued tostrengthen its capital structure and reduce its gearing levels.