In the first nine months of 2018, Sonae continued to deliver a solid set of results across its portfolio of businesses. Consolidated turnover growth stood at 7% year-on-year, with positive contributions from all business units, and underlying EBITDA increased 3.5% to 233 million euros. Net income grew 50% to 200 million euros driven by a strong increase in indirect income.
In the third quarter, Sonae MC continues to be worth highlighting, both due to the strong turnover growth and to profitability stabilizing at benchmark levels. During this period, the reorganization of participations and restructuring of the new perimeter of this business unit was completed, achieving the objectives of autonomy and agility, and allowing it to operate with a governance model fully aligned with the best practices of listed companies. Unfortunately, Sonae chose in October to withdraw its intention to float Sonae MC, due to particularly adverse market conditions.
Equally relevant and also in this quarter, Sonae completed the 20% stake acquisition of Sonae Sierra, an important milestone to increase the international profile of the group by reinforcing its participation and influence over this leading player in the retail real estate sector. Notwithstanding this acquisition and the consolidation of Sonae Sierra’s balance sheet, Sonae continued to strengthen its capital structure and reduce its gearing levels.