June 1, 2018 / 6:49 AM / 5 months ago

UPDATE 1-Elekta Q4 adjusted operating profit below forecasts, dividend higher

(Adds CEO comment, background)

June 1 (Reuters) - Swedish radiation therapy equipment maker Elekta on Friday reported below-forecast earnings for its fiscal fourth quarter, but proposed a higher dividend than expected.

* Says sees net sales growth of around 7 percent based on constant exchange rates and an EBITA-margin of around 20 percent in fiscal year 2018/19

* Q4 ‍gross order intake was 4,656 million SEK, up 10 percent based on constant exchange rates, and just below a 4,684 million mean analyst forecast

* Q4 ‍EBITA (earnings before interest, tax and amortization), adjusted for items affecting comparability and bad debt losses, rose to 918 million from 779 million in the year-ago quarter, lagging a 959 million average analyst forecast in a Reuters poll

* Proposes a dividend of SEK 1.40 per share for the fiscal year 2017/18 versus median expectations of 1.20 SEK in Reuters poll and up from 1.00 SEK in the previous year

• Says eight Elekta Unity orders were booked in quarter, which brings the total to 28 sold. The new machine is seen as an important future growth-driver​​

* Co. still expects to win approval for Unity in Europe in June and in the U.S. in 2018, Chief Executive Richard Hausmann tells Reuters

* “A year or two years ago we had quite some topics to solve in the U.S. We consider that as turned around. The dynamics in the US are very positive for us,” Hausmann says

* Elekta counts U.S. firm Varian Medical Systems as its main rival

Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage: (Reporting by Helena Soderpalm; Editing by Olof Swahnberg)

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