May 27, 2014 / 6:56 PM / in 4 years

UPDATE 1-CA Immo's profitability rises as finance costs fall

* Q1 FFO up 7 pct to 16 mln euros, 2014 target at least 55 mln

* Net rental income down 24 pct to 33 mln euros

* Net profit down 22 pct to 14 mln euros (Adds details on outlook, net profit, background)

VIENNA, May 27 (Reuters) - Austrian real-estate group CA Immobilien reported a 7 percent rise in first-quarter funds from operations on Tuesday, thanks mainly to lower financing costs.

The company, which specialises in letting and managing office properties in central Europe, has made extensive sales of non-strategic properties, including the partial sale of Tower 185 in Frankfurt, to cut debt and boost its equity ratio.

FFO 1, a measure of cash flow from operations excluding depreciation, amortisation and gains or losses from property disposals, was 16 million euros ($22 million) in the quarter, CA Immo said.

The company said it aimed for at least 55 million euros this year in FFO 1, which is also a key indicator of profitability in the property rental business, compared with 63 million euros last year, when it had a larger asset base.

“Having successfully consolidated the balance sheet last year, our efforts in 2014 will be focused on raising long-term profitability still further,” Chief Executive Bruno Ettenauer said in a statement.

Income from the sale of investment properties rose 82 percent to 4.3 million euros in the quarter, while net debt fell to 1.1 billion euros from 1.72 billion at the end of 2013.

Net rental income fell 24 percent to 33 million euros on a comparable basis, taking account of the deconsolidation of its income from joint ventures, which were reported separately under new accounting rules it adopted at the start of the year.

Income from JVs more than doubled to 8 million euros.

Net profit fell 22 percent to 14 million euros despite the strong asset disposals and the consolidation of the JV income on the bottom line due to a negative effect of 8.3 million euros from derivatives.

$1 = 0.7345 Euros Reporting by Georgina Prodhan, editing by David Evans

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