Merck KGaA triples Q1 net profit as economic recovery kicks in

28 April 2010 08:49  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS news)--Merck KGaA’s net profit for the first quarter of 2010 more than tripled to €191.4m ($251.8m) from €56.7m recorded in the same period last year, as all of the group’s business divisions recovered from the global economic crisis, the German specialty chemical and pharmaceutical company said on Wednesday.

Total revenue rose 12.9% year on year in the first quarter to €2.10bn, largely helped by the group’s chemicals divisions returning to their pre-crisis levels, it said.

Merck’s revenue of its chemicals business sector, which generated 28% of the group's total revenue, jumped 34% to €585m in the first quarter, as the business sector returned to full utilisation of production capacity and inventories were reduced.

Total revenues for Merck’s liquid crystals division, which produces the chemicals used in flat-panel televisions and materials for 3D vision glasses, jumped 82% year on year in the first quarter of 2010 to €239m due to growing demand.

“Although we don’t expect 2010 will be easy, we did start the year off quite well, especially in our chemicals business,” said Karl-Ludwig Kley, chairman of the executive board of Merck KGaA.

“Because of the good results in our liquid crystals division, we have raised our guidance for 2010 and now expect the operating result of our Liquid Crystals division to rise by 60% to 70% and the Group operating result to increase between 30% and 40%,” Kley added.

Merck forecast that total revenues for the year 2010 should increase in a range of 3% to 7% from €7.75bn recorded in 2009.

($1 = €0.76)

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By: Franco Capaldo
+44 (0)20 8652 3214

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