Parmalat boosts sales 5.4 per cent on rising demand

By Ahmed ElAmin

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Cent Milk Parmalat

Italy-based Parmalat, one of the world's largest dairy companies,
yesterday reported a 5.4 per cent increase in sales boosted by
rising demand for its products in the nine months ended 30

The increasingly healthy condition of the company's bottomline, indicates that efforts to raise Parmalat out of a bankrupt financial condition continue to pay off, though some of its profits are set aside for creditors. Net revenues rose to €2.8bn during the nine months, with operating profit lifted by 3 per cent compared to the same period last year. Margins for the nine month perid show a four percentage point gain to 12.1 per cent, compared to the same period last year. However margins fell in the third quarter ended 30 September 2007 to 5.6 per cent compared to 14.3 per cent in the same period 2006. Net profit attributable to the company rose to €276.3m in the first nine months of the year, from €97.3m in the year-earlier period, Parmalat reported. The company said the results are in line with expectations, despite setbacks at its operations in Venezuela, and an increase in the prices paid for raw milk. The company says its operating profit targets are for an annual increase ranging between 7 to 10 per cent compared with 2006. The company also reported it was making progress in diversifying its mix of product by adding more functional milk varieties and in implementing cost reduction programmes. About 35 per cent of the company's revenues come from the North American markets, 30 per cent from Italy, and four per cent from the rest of Europe. The companies remaining revenues are spread throughout the rest of the world. Parmalat is still in the process of reaching settlements with a number of European and US financial institutions in its ongoing fight to recoup the billions lost in 2003, when the company defaulted on about €14bn in debt. Under chief executive Enrico Bondi, the company has followed a strategy to recoup the billions it lost in the financial scandal and two years of Italian government administration.

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