April 25, 2018 / 5:23 AM / in a month

BRIEF-Norway's Orkla Q1 lags, hit by high raw material prices

April 25 (Reuters) - Orkla ASA:

* ORKLA Q1 ADJUSTED EBIT NOK 897 MILLION (NOT 942 MILLION) (REUTERS POLL NOK 999 MILLION)

* ORKLA Q1 PRETAX RESULT NOK 886 MILLION (REUTERS POLL NOK 1.05 BILLION)

* OVERALL PROFIT GROWTH REMAINED WEAK, MAINLY DUE TO HIGHER RAW MATERIAL PRICES AND CONTINUED WEAK GROWTH IN THE MARINE SEGMENT.

* THE EFFECTS OF COST REDUCTION PROGRAMMES WERE COUNTERACTED BY HIGHER PURCHASING PRICES DUE TO CURRENCY EXCHANGE RATES (SEK/NOK VS EUR), NEGATIVE MIX EFFECTS AND HIGHER ADVERTISING INVESTMENTS.

* RESULTS FOR QUARTER WERE LOWER THAN EXPECTED DUE TO A NUMBER OF FACTORS: TIMING OF EASTER MEANT FEWER SALES DAYS IN SCANDINAVIAN COUNTRIES, A COLD WINTER CONTRIBUTED TO LOWER SALES OF ICE CREAM INGREDIENTS AND PAINTING TOOLS

* ORKLA TARGETS ORGANIC GROWTH THAT AT LEAST MATCHES MARKET GROWTH, WHICH IS EXPECTED TO BE AROUND 2% GOING FORWARD, AND ANNUAL EBIT (ADJUSTED.) GROWTH OF 6–9% IN BRANDED CONSUMER GOODS FOR 2016–2018

* ORKLA ASA: WILL CONTINUE ITS EFFORTS TO RATIONALISE ITS EXISTING OPERATIONS, SUCH AS THROUGH ITS FACTORY FOOTPRINT PROGRAMME, AND TO EXTRACT SYNERGIES FROM ACQUIRED COMPANIES. Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage: (Reporting By Joachim Dagenborg)

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