Verbio CEO sees 2010 sales growing by up to 10 percent

FRANKFURT Fri Oct 22, 2010 9:08am EDT

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German biofuel company Verbio expects to see its full-year sales rise by as much as 10 percent, its chief executive said on Friday, giving the first concrete outlook for revenues in the ongoing year. So far, the company had guided for a "significant increase" in turnover but based on Claus Sauter's estimate, this year's top line could rise to as much as 552 million euros ($768.1 million).

This would be above the 520 million euro estimate expected by analysts at SES Research.

"We think that sales could grow by up to 10 percent," Sauter told Reuters, adding that the company would give out an outlook for 2011 when it publishes third-quarter results on November 11.

"(This outlook) will be much more ambitious than the one for 2010," Sauter said, adding that business continued to go well.

Producers of bioethanol and biodiesel have suffered from volatile crop prices, leading Verbio to post a 2009 loss before interest and tax of 3 million euros. But Sauter confirmed that the company was still expecting a positive EBIT this year in the high single digit million euro range.

Recovering prices, however, have led shares in Verbio -- which makes most of its sales through its biodiesel segment -- to soar 48 percent since the beginning of the year, outperforming Suedzucker unit CropEnergies, which rose 18 percent over the same period.

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