Safran posts 24 pct rise in 2012 operating profit

PARIS Thu Feb 21, 2013 1:07am EST

PARIS Feb 21 (Reuters) - French aerospace group Safran posted a 24 percent rise in full-year operating profit on Thursday, lifted by demand for aircraft engines and maintenance, currency gains and acquisitions.

Recurring operating income of 1.47 billion euros ($1.97 billion) came on revenue of 13.56 billion, up 15.5 percent year-on-year, Safran said in a statement.

The company forecast revenue growth would slow this year to around 5 percent, with recurring operating income growing by a mid-teens percentage.

Safran was expected to post sales of 13.263 billion euros and operating profit of 1.467 billion, according to the average of analysts' forecasts in a Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S poll. ($1 = 0.7479 euros) (Reporting by James Regan; Editing by Christian Plumb)