PARIS Feb 6 French drugmaker Sanofi
posted slightly better-than-expected profit in the fourth
quarter and predicted earnings would improve further in 2014,
helped by growth in its diabetes and rare diseases units, and in
Sanofi plans to pay a 2013 dividend of 2.80 euros per share,
up from 2.77 euros the previous year, the company added in a
statement on Thursday.
The company said business earnings per share (EPS) should
grow between 4 and 7 percent this year at constant exchange
rates, "barring major unforeseen adverse events".
Business net income, which excludes items such as
amortisation and legal costs, rose 16.8 percent to 1.81 billion
euros ($2.45 billion) in the fourth quarter and was up 30.5
percent at constant exchange rates.
Sales were 0.8 percent lower at 8.46 billion euros, with
currency effects knocking 7.3 percentage points off growth.
Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S had on average
forecast quarterly sales of 8.4 billion euros and net income of
Full-year sales in emerging markets - where Sanofi makes a
third of its total revenue - rose 4.4 percent to 10.96 billion
euros at constant exchange rates. This marked a slowdown from
the 8.3 percent growth recorded in 2012, hit by inventory issues