September 13, 2017 / 7:01 PM / 10 months ago

Zodiac reaffirms targets despite disappointing Q4 seat sales

PARIS, Sept 13 (Reuters) - Zodiac Aerospace reported a 10 percent drop in sales at its troubled seats division, but stuck to financial targets for the just-ended financial year as it gets to grips with industrial problems that drew criticism from Airbus and Boeing.

The French company, which is in the process of being acquired by aero engine maker Safran, said overall revenues for the year to end-August fell 1.6 percent to 5.13 billion euros ($6.1 billion), led by a 10.3 percent decline in revenues from seats.

Finance Director Didier Fontaine said Zodiac had sharply reduced delays at a UK seats plant where bottlenecks had contributed earlier this year to the latest in a series of profit warnings, forcing Safran to revise its takeover offer.

“Now we are talking about days, not weeks or months in terms of delivery delays,” he told analysts.

In the wake of those problems, seats and cabins had a disappointing fourth-quarter in sales, offset by growth in aerosystems, but Zodiac’s recovery is “on track,” he added.

Zodiac reaffirmed goals for 2016/17, for which full results will be published on Oct. 31.

Net debt should be “well below” three times earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation at the end of the 2016/17 financial year, the company said.

“Zodiac Aerospace is pursuing with determination its industrial recovery plan and its transformation plan,” it added in a statement. ($1 = 0.8420 euros) (Reporting by Cyril Altmeyer and Tim Hepher; Editing by Susan Fenton)

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