March 10, 2011 / 11:17 PM / 9 years ago

UPDATE 1-Neo Material posts higher Q4 profit

* Q4 EPS $0.11 vs $0.07 last year

* Q4 rev up 12 pct

March 10 (Reuters) - Canada’s Neo Material Technologies Inc , which operates rare-earth processing plants in China, reported a higher fourth-quarter profit, helped by strong performance at both its segments.

October-December profit was $13 million, or 11 cents a share, compared with $9 million, or 7 cents a share, last year.

Revenue rose 12 percent to $101.9 million.

Neo — one of the few western companies running a rare-earth processing plants in China — produces neodymium magnetic powders, which is used in making everything from wind turbines to cameras, and counts Samsung Canon Hitachi and Philips as its clients.

China has a near monopoly on the production and export of rare earth elements — used in high-tech devices, windmills, batteries and some weaponry.

The company said revenue at its Magnequench division, which makes the magnetic powders used in the production of precision motors and sensors, rose 43 percent to $47.2 million.

Revenue at its materials division nearly doubled to $60.8 million.

China has launched a nationwide campaign against the illegal extraction and trading of rare earths, saying unregulated mining was causing untold damage to its environment.

“We have seen continued strong demand to date and based on current visibility, we remain bullish on our outlook for the near term,” the company said in a statement.

Shares of the company closed at C$8.71 on Thursday on the Toronto Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Aftab Ahmed in Bangalore; Editing by Maju Samuel)

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