* Net income of 5 mln reais misses 15 mln reais forecast
* Fewer housing starts, focus on deliveries boosts cash flow
* New 2012 operational cash flow forecast 600 mln-800 mln
SAO PAULO, Nov 12 Brazilian homebuilder Gafisa
SA posted a small profit in the third quarter and
raised its full-year target for operational cash flow, as it
focused on delivering older projects and reducing debt levels.
Gafisa reported net income of 5 million reais ($2 million)
in a securities filing on Monday, improving from a revised 51
million reais loss a year earlier, but missing an estimated
profit of 15 million reais forecast in a Reuters survey.
Brazil's biggest homebuilder is scaling back operations
after years of poorly-controlled growth to reduce debts and
finish developments that have exceeded budgets and timelines.
With a greater focus on delivering older projects, Gafisa
generated 149 million reais of cash from operations in the third
quarter. In the nine months through September, the builder
passed the midpoint of its former 2012 cash flow guidance of 500
million to 700 million reais. Its new target is 600 million to
800 million reais of cash generated from operations this year.
Ongoing cancellations in the low-income Tenda unit continued
to weigh on revenue, as the company scrapped sales contracts
with clients whose credit profile deteriorated while they waited
for the homebuilder to finish their apartments.
Still, Tenda cancellations eased 20 percent from the prior
quarter to 264 million reais and the company resold 70 percent
of the Tenda units that returned to inventory so far this year.
Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and
amortization, a gauge of operating profit known as EBITDA,
totaled 183 million reais in the quarter, beating a forecast of
149 million reais in the Reuters poll.
(Reporting by Brad Haynes; Editing by Eric Meijer)