UPDATE 1-Spain's Abertis hunts for new projects after cash windfall

miércoles 10 de febrero de 2016 08:30 GYT

* Considering six projects in Europe, Americas

* Full-year net profit triples to 1.9 bln euros on one-off gains

* Forecasts 2016 EBITDA of 3.1 bln euros vs 2.7 bln euros in 2015 (Adds detail, CFO and analyst comment)

By Angus Berwick

MADRID, Feb 10 (Reuters) - Spanish toll road operator Abertis is considering several new projects in Europe and the Americas as it looks to use the cash windfall from last year's listing of its Cellnex business to fund worldwide expansion.

Abertis, which has said it would increase its investment "firepower" as it hunts for more motorway takeovers, forecasts rising profit this year, with increased traffic in Spain offsetting a decline in Brazil, one of its biggest markets.

The company is considering six projects in Europe and the Americas and could invest 2 billion euros ($2.3 billion) over two years to extend concessions in Latin America, it said on Wednesday.

Chief Financial Officer Jose Aljaro told a news conference that it has investment capacity of 4 billion euros but would conserve its cash reserves to keep its investment grade.

The Barcelona-based company's 2015 full-year net profit almost tripled to 1.9 billion euros from a year earlier, boosted by the 2.7 billion euros obtained from July's Cellnex listing.   Continuación...