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Saint-Gobain shows 53.3% profit growth

Published:  28 October, 2011

PARIS: Saint-Gobain, which recently acquired the Build Center chain from Wolseley, has posted a 53.3% growth in first-half net profits to €768m. 

The strong sales growth had confirmed the recovery in volumes seen in 2010, the company said.

Sales were up 6.9% to €20.8bn, while operating profits were 19% up to €1.72bn.

The company added that the results confirmed the gradual improvement in businesses linked to the residential construction sector in Europe but "In contrast, trading was more uneven in the UK and eastern Europe, and remains very tough in southern Europe," it said.

The Building Distribution division, which includes the Jewson and International Timber businesses in the UK, rebounded strongly during the first half, posting 7.3% organic growth, spurred by a strong rise in sales volumes in France, Germany, the Netherlands and Scandinavia.

The division's operating margin was up to 3.6% from 2.4%.

"We expect the underlying trends observed since the beginning of the year to continue in the six months to 31 December," the company stated.

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