UPDATE 1-FLSmidth profit dented by materials division problems

Tue Feb 12, 2013 4:45am EST

* Q4 EBIT 796 mln DKK vs avg forecast 819 mln

* Sees FY 2013 revenues growing to 27-30 bln DKK

* Forecasts 2013 EBITA margin of 8-10 pct

* Shares fall 1.0 pct (Adds details, quotes, share price)

COPENHAGEN, Feb 12 (Reuters) - Danish engineering group FLSmidth & Co A/S reported a surprise 8 percent fall in fourth-quarter earnings, hit by a loss at its materials handling division and a sluggish mining sector.

FLSmidth on Tuesday blamed the 203 million Danish crown ($36.4 million) divisional loss on project delays and cost overruns at the unit whose activities range from raw ore crushing to ship loading and unloading facilities.

The group, which sells engineering services and equipment to the cement and minerals industries, said earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) fell to 796 million crowns.

That missed analysts' average forecast for a rise to 819 million in a Reuters poll.

"It is another very disappointing quarter for earnings in Material Handling," said Sydbank analyst Jacob Pedersen.

"They are still carrying some concern into 2013," Pedersen said.

The loss-making division, which accounted for 19 percent of group revenue in 2012, made a 115 million crowns profit in the fourth quarter of the previous year.

Chief Executive Jorgen Huno Rasmussen said the problems had now been resolved and that the unit would begin to make progress.

FLSmidth said that in the second half of 2012 mining companies, part of its customer base, had responded to weak economies by announcing cuts in capital expenditure.

Group revenue rose 16 percent to 8.05 billion in the fourth quarter, the highest quarterly revenue the group ever recorded, aided by strong sales in all of its units apart from materials handling, it said.

Revenue grew by 21 percent in the full year and the company expects growth of 9 to 21 percent to between 27 billion and 30 billion crowns ($4.84 billion to $5.38 billion) in 2013.

Sales and administrative costs rose 12 percent in the quarter, related partly to acquisitions.

Shares in FLSmidth traded down 1.0 percent at 0942 GMT, against a 0.3 percent rise in the Copenhagen stock exchange benchmark index. ($1 = 5.5771 Danish crowns) (Reporting by Mette Fraende and Teis Jensen; Editing by Erica Billingham)

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