SOL’s consolidated sales were €258,9 ml, up eight per cent on the same period of 2004 (€ 239,7 ml at 30/09/04), gross operating margin of €59,4 ml (+2% compared with €58,2 ml at 30/09/04), cash flow of € 42,7 ml (+4.5% compared with € 40,8 ml at 30/09/04) and capital expenditures of €49,2 ml (€40,1 ml at 30/09/04).

SOL had strong increase in consolidated sales and good performance in gross operating profit, equal to 22.9 per cent on sales. Due to the increase of the depreciation costs, the net operating profit of €29,7 ml, equal to 11.5 per cent on sales (€30,2 ml at 30/09/04) and net profit of €14,2 ml, equal to 5.5 per cent on sales, (€ 14,6 ml at 30/09/04) are slightly decreasing vs. third quarter 2004.

The strong capital expenditures for the construction of three new plants in Belgium, Slovenia and Macedonia produced a slightly increase in the net debt, equal to €84,7 ml (€ 75,2 ml at 31/12/04).

The excellent growth of sales is due to the strong development on sales abroad (+15.3%) and to the good trend of the activity in Italy (+4.9%) despite of the unfavourable macroeconomic scenario and the continuing great increase of the energy costs.

Marco Annoni, vice president of SOL, commented: “We consider positive the results achieved in these nine months of 2005. The results show a significant growth and good profitability, despite of the lasting uncertain climate which continue to characterise the economic contest, the increasing of the energy costs and the considerable efforts needed to the construction and the start-up of new ASU plants.”