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Paris, France (AFP) July 31, 2013
French water and waste management utility Suez Environnement said on Wednesday its first-half net profit more than trebled as last year's results were weighed down by one-off costs.
The group said that sales slowed in the six month-period ending June 30, dropping to 7.18 billion euros ($9.52 billion) from 7.32 billion euros a year .
But it maintained its targets for 2013 which include achieving higher revenues in 2013 than in 2012.
Net profit for the six months to the end of June 30, came to 132 million euros, up significantly from the 40 million euros recorded in the same period in 2012 when it was hit by exceptional costs.
The company's margin for earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation widened however, to 16.8 percent from 15.5 percent, and was boosted by an ongoing cost-cutting programme.
The shares rose by 2.64 percent to 10.70 euros on the Paris stock exchange in an overall lower market.
Group chief executive Jean-Louis Chaussade called the results "an improved performance," saying Suez Environnement continues expanding in growing markets "despite the still adverse economic environment, combined with unfavourable weather conditions in Europe".
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