Belgium's Agfa lifts margins and reduces debt

BRUSSELS, March 12 Wed Mar 12, 2014 3:11am EDT

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BRUSSELS, March 12 (Reuters) - Belgian imaging group Agfa-Gevaert on Wednesday posted an improved operating result for 2013 and lowered net debt after an efficiency programme boosted margins and offset falling revenues.

Recurring operating profit (REBIT) for 2013 grew 3.6 percent from 2012 to 144 million euros ($199.68 million), boosted by a strong improvement at its printing business. The operation had benefited from the efficiency drive and lower raw material prices.

The group said it reduced net debt to 217 million euros at the end of 2013, against 291 million euros a year earlier. ($1 = 0.7212 Euros) (Reporting by Robert-Jan Bartunek; Editing by David Goodman)