Austrian builder Strabag doubles dividend
VIENNA, April 30
VIENNA, April 30 (Reuters) - Austria builder Strabag said on Wednesday it would more than double its 2013 dividend to 0.45 euros per share from 0.20 euros after an 87 percent jump in full-year net profit.
The earnings rise to 114 million euros ($158 million) was less than the 124 million euros average estimate in a Reuters poll of analysts, but the dividend was slightly higher than the expected 0.43 euros.
In February, Strabag had reported a 3 percent drop in 2013 output amid scarce infrastructure funding and price pressure in Europe, but said it expected this to remain stable in 2014.
It said it also expected stable earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) this year, after it made 262 million euros in 2013.
Strabag said an expected decline in Poland in 2013 following the end of a construction boom and project-related reductions in Canada, Benelux and Romania were nearly balanced out by increases in markets including Hungary, Austria and Africa.
"Our group's broad diversification is proving to be the best form of crisis insurance," Chief Executive Thomas Birtel said in a statement. ($1 = 0.7237 Euros) (Reporting by Georgina Prodhan. Editing by Jane Merriman)