Alstom mulls transport unit stake sale after weak H1

PARIS Wed Nov 6, 2013 1:22am EST

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PARIS Nov 6 (Reuters) - French power and engineering firm Alstom said it would ramp up cost cuts and asset disposals after a drop in first-half orders and net income, and a heavy cash outflow.

Alstom set a target of 1 to 2 billion euros of disposals through the possible sale of a minority stake in its transport business and the disposal of non-strategic assets. It expected annual cost savings to rise to 1.5 billion euros ($2.02 billion) by April 2016.

Net profit fell 3 percent to 375 million euros on sales of 9.73 billion, the company said on Wednesday. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S had on average forecast net profit of 352 million on sales of 9.59 billion.

The group booked 9.4 billion euros of orders, down 22 percent year-on-year. Free cash flow was a negative 511 million euros. ($1 = 0.7421 euros) (Reporting by Natalie Huet; Editing by James Regan)

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