FRANCE: Danone profits dive on water writedown
A write down in its home and office water delivery business (HOD) saw France's Groupe Danone report a fall in net profit of 62% for its full year to €317m (US$405m) from €839m a year earlier.
The write down, which was announced in January, was for a total of €600m (US$766m). If the writedown is excluded then the water giant would have reported a rise in net income of 9% to €917m.
Operating profit grew to €1.71bn (US$2.18bn) from €1.6bn a year ago.
The food and drinks group's beverage division, which includes the packaged water business, was hit by higher costs and negative exchange rate movements, which saw its operating margin fall.
Looking forward, however, the company said that it expects earnings per share to rise 10% this year on the back of sales growth of 5% and 7%. Danone's board also expects the company's profit margins to improve.
Danone said today it plans to raise its annual dividend by 10% to €1.35 a share.
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