July 25, 2019 / 6:32 AM / 4 months ago

Sika confirms sales goal after first half revenue rises nearly 8%

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Swiss chemical group Sika is seen at a plant in Zurich, Switzerland January 8, 2019. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

ZURICH (Reuters) - Sika (SIKA.S) reported better-than-expected sales growth during the first half of the year, the construction chemicals maker said on Thursday, and confirmed its guidance to reach annual sales of 8 billion Swiss francs ( £6.5 billion ) for the first time.

The Swiss company posted sales rising 7.6% to 3.73 billion francs, beating the 3.68 billion francs expected by analysts. A net profit increase of 3.9% to 330.7 million francs fell short of expectations for 342 million francs.

As well as confirming its sales goal, the company said it was also aiming for double-digit growth in operating profit.

Sika’s growth has been supported by acquisitions and new factories. Sika earlier this week said it was expanding its factory in Serbia, and was opening seven to nine new plants this year. It has also bought French mortar maker Parex in a 2.5 billion franc deal.

Paul Schuler, Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are well-positioned in a commercially challenging environment, and achieved a strong sales growth of 9.6% in the first half of 2019.”

“We are enjoying a significant boost to growth thanks to the Parex acquisition, and are well on track to exceed the sales mark of 8 billion francs.”

Reporting by John Revill; Editing by Michelle Martin

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