Gerdau closed the year 2012 with a consolidated net revenue of R$ 38 billion, which is a growth of 7% compared to last year. Nevertheless, the physical volume of shipments saw a 3% reduction compared to the previous year, reaching 18.6 million metric tons due to the slowdown in China and other emerging countries, the European crisis, and uncertainty over the fiscal policy of the United States. Performance in the Brazilian domestic market (excluding the special steel segment) in 2012, despite a lower economic activity recorded in the country, was highlighted among the regions in which Gerdau operates with an expansion in its net revenue (+12%) and volume of physical sales (+5%). Gerdau's global steel production in the year was 18.9 million metric tons, 4% less compared to 2011. Considering the economic context of 2012, EBITDA amounted to R$ 4.2 billion, which is a 10% reduction compared to the previous year. Consolidated net profit, in turn, was R$ 1.5 billion in 2012, 29% lower than in 2011. In the fourth quarter, consolidated net revenue was R$ 9 billion, while shipments reached 4.3 million metric tons. Consolidated steel production on the other hand was 4.2 million metric tons. In the same period, the consolidated EBITDA totaled R$ 891 million and net profit R$ 143 million. "The performance recorded in the fourth quarter of 2012 does not represent Gerdau's performance trend for 2013 as it was impacted by extraordinary operational and financial adjustments in North America and Latin America. Throughout 2012, beyond the effects of the global economic environment on the Company's performance, we saw an increase in costs of important raw materials, notably scrap, and freight, which impacted the sector's profitability as a whole. In this context, we sought to enhance our operational efficiency in all regions where we operate, driven by the strategy of striving for higher levels of profitability and sustainable development. Among the main initiatives is to increase investments in the mining area, which should add more profit to our business and generate significant results with the export of this raw material to the international market. We are also going to expand the product mix in Brazil with the start of production of flat steel products in the first quarter of 2013. In addition, we are strengthening our geographic diversification in markets with significant growth potential, such as India, where we began with the production of special steels, a high value-added segment," said Gerdau's CEO, André B. Gerdau Johannpeter. About GerdauGerdau is the leader in the segment of long steel in the Americas and one of the main suppliers of special long steel in the world. With over 45,000 employees, it has industrial operations in 14 countries—in the Americas, Europe, and Asia—which together represent an installed capacity of over 25 million metric tons of steel per year. It is the largest recycler in Latin America and in the world, and transforms each year millions of tons of scrap steel, reinforcing its commitment to sustainable development in the regions where it operates. Gerdau is listed on the stock exchanges of São Paulo, New York, and Madrid and has over 140,000 shareholders.