Mauritius conglomerate IBL's pretax up 4.6 pct in first half

PORT LOUIS Thu Feb 13, 2014 10:25am EST

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PORT LOUIS Feb 13 (Reuters) - Mauritian conglomerate Ireland Blyth Ltd (IBL) posted a 4.6 percent rise in pretax profit for the half year to Dec. 31, helped by a stronger performance in its commerce and logistics, aviation and shipping business.

The group, which also has operations in seafood, marine, financial services and engineering, said on Thursday pretax profit for the six months reached 435 million rupees ($14.4 million).

"The associated companies posted better results, thus improving the profit before taxation," IBL said in a statement.

Earnings per share rose to 4.07 rupees from 4 rupees in the same period last year. IBL shares were unchanged at 110 rupees at the close of trade on Thursday.

The conglomerate said it expected trading conditions to remain challenging for the rest of the year. ($1 = 30.3000 Mauritius rupees) (Reporting by Jean Paul Arouff; Editing by Drazen Jorgic and David Holmes)

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