25 April 2012 12:03 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--Praxair’s first-quarter net income rose by 5% year on year to $419m (€318m) on increased sales revenue, the US-based industrial gases producer said on Wednesday.
The company’s sales were up by 5% in the first quarter, rising to $2.84bn from $2.70bn in the same period in 2011. Diluted earnings per share increased by 7% to $1.38.
Growth was strongest in North America and Asia in the manufacturing, metals and energy markets, Praxair said. Sales were slower in Europe and South America because of weaker economic conditions.
First-quarter operating profit rose by 6% to $627m, from $591m in the same quarter of 2011, driven by higher volumes and prices – although this was partially offset by weaker currencies and cost inflation.
“Our first-quarter results demonstrated continued strong growth in North America, where we are well-positioned to continue to grow from greater sales to customers in the chemical, energy and manufacturing industries, who are benefiting from low natural gas costs,” said chairman and CEO Steve Angel.
“We expect the South America and Asia businesses to continue to grow as we start up new projects driven by increasing consumer demand and infrastructure investment.
“New large-project proposal activity continues to be robust and we remain focused on growing the business at continued high levels of profitability and return on capital,” he added.
For the full year of 2012, Praxair expects sales in the range of $11.6bn to $11.9bn, it said, and diluted earnings per share in the range of $5.75 to $5.90.
($1 = €0.76)
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