Dear Reader, It is a pleasure to share with you this autumn issue of what’s news, full as always of interesting news about our company and our industry. And it certainly is interesting to see what is happening in the industry in these troubled economic times. For months now, we all have heard, talked and argued about the impact of the crisis. What everyone seems to agree on is that our industry will be very different when it emerges from it. Only the fittest will survive. “Fittest” here means pure adaptability in the face of change: after all, “crisis” is just another word for change and change is difficult for most of us. However, change will always happen and so, rather than fearing it, we all should embrace it as inevitable and act accordingly, responding to it imaginatively to achieve the goals and results we seek. The only way to act is to see a crisis as an opportunity. We at Roca, with our close to one hundred years of experience in the industry, have had to face crises on a number of occasions: in all of them, we have proven to be the fittest, the ones to survive. We certainly will this time, too.
N E W S
¬ The Effects of the Crisis at Internacional Level on the Construction Sector.
I N S I D E R O C A
¬ Towards 100 years of history. ¬ 2020 Vision.
E V E N T S
¬ DME. Design Management Europe Award.
C O M M U N I C A T I O N
¬ Roca Barcelona Gallery. Our brand’s new flagship building in Barcelona.
R O C A I N T H E W O R L D
¬ A world leader. Roca present in 135 markets. ¬ Distribution.
P R O D U C T N O V E L T I E S
Carlos Velázquez Senior Managing Director Marketing Roca Corporación Empresarial
N E W S
¬ The Barcelona Collection. ¬ W+W. Sustainability, design and innovation in a single product.
The Effects of the Crisis
at International Level on the Construction Sector
This contraction of some economies has had a direct ef fect on unemployment rates which, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), could reach 10% of the workforce of the advanced economies. The logical consequences of this increase in unemployment are a reduction in consumption and rising social tension and conflict. One of the sectors which is suffering most in the current economic situation at a worldwide level is the construction market, one of the turbines of economic growth in several countries. In the U.S.A., where the current economic crisis began, the construction of new homes has fallen to its lowest level in 17 years. According to the U.S. Department of Trade, construction fell at an annual rate of 850,000 houses in 2008, the worst situation since 1991. The profound worldwide recession which began in the last quarter of 2007 is having diverse effects on the economic, social and political equilibrium throughout the world. In economic terms, the worldwide crisis has caused not only strong de-capitalization and indebtedness in several companies who are unable to access sources of finance, but also a loss of confidence on the part of the financial markets. As a result, economic growth in the majority of the most industrialized countries has decreased so much that they have fallen into recession. The crisis in the housing sector in the U.S.A. has dragged other sectors into the recession and has caused a significant increase in the unemployment rate which stood at 9.8% in September 2009. In addition to this, the average price of a house has gone down, while the number of embargoes imposed for unpaid mortgages has reached a record high. Although there have been the brief intermittent periods of stagnation over the last ten years in Europe, we have to go back to 1993 to observe similar levels of downturn to the ones we are witnessing today. The crisis has affected the construction of new residential properties in particular. In 2008, there was a 13% decrease in the Euroconstruct zone which includes, Germany, Spain, France, Italy, the United Kingdom and the Eastern European countries, and it is expected that the figures for 2009 will be similar. Spain, a country where the construction s