Henkel sees further growth in 2014
German consumer chemicals group Henkel, maker of Persil washing powder, said on Thursday it expects to grow further this year after meeting its targets for 2013 in a tough environment.
"The economic environment remains challenging and we expect persisting foreign exchange effects, particularly in the first half of the year," said chief executive Kaspar Rorsted.
"For the full fiscal year 2014 we expect organic sales growth to be between 3.0 and 5.0 percent," Rorsted said.
In 2013, Henkel -- which also makes Schwarzkopf beauty care products and Loctite and Pritt adhesives -- booked a 7.4-percent increase in net profit to 1.589 billion euros ($2.2 billion).
Underlying or operating profit, as measured by earnings before interest and tax (EBIT), was up 3.8 percent at 2.285 billion euros, while sales slipped by 0.9 percent to 16.355 billion euros.
That means the operating margin rose to 15.4 percent.
For 2014, Rorsted said Henkel is pencilling in an operating margin of 15.5 percent.
The group said it would pay an increased dividend of 1.22 euros per share for its non-voting preference shares and 1.20 euros per share for its common stock.
Last year, Henkel paid a dividend of 0.95 euros per preference share and 0.93 euros per common share.
© 2014 AFP