October 26, 2017 / 5:04 AM / a year ago

Sika says on course to meet full-year sales target

ZURICH, Oct 26 (Reuters) - Swiss construction chemicals maker Sika said it was well on course to achieve its full-year sales target and achieve its highest-ever sales figure after reporting third-quarter growth on Thursday in line with forecasts.

The company, which has been fighting a takeover attempt by France’s Saint-Gobain for the last three years, said operating profit rose 13.2 percent to 669 million Swiss francs ($676.65 million), matching analyst forecasts in a Reuters poll.

Growth in all regions meant sales rose 6.8 percent to 4.63 billion Swiss francs ($4.68 billion), also matching analyst forecasts.

The results were the first under new Chief Executive Paul Schuler, a company veteran who took the reins in July after Jan Jenisch moved to cement maker LafargeHolcim.

“The strategic targets for 2020 were successfully implemented in the first nine months of 2017, leading to record results,” the company said.

“The strong performance supports the target for the full year - namely, a 6-8 percent increase in sales to more than 6 billion francs for the first time.”

The company, which makes chemicals used in construction projects and adhesives for carmakers, warned that raw material prices represented a challenge during the current year.

But it gave no new update on the outcome of its long-running battle with Saint-Gobain, saying only the situation remained an element of uncertainty for the future.

Sika has clashed with its family shareholder that wants to sell its controlling stake to Saint-Gobain. The next court decision — centering on the family’s voting rights — is expected in the next few weeks. ($1 = 0.9887 Swiss francs) (Reporting by John Revill, editing by John Miller and Sunil Nair)

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