Danone boosts sales, plans more takeovers

17th October 2006, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Oct 17, 2006 (AFP) - French food giant Danone said on Tuesday that sales in the third quarter of the year had grown by 4.1 percent on a 12-month comparison, boosted by activity in emerging countries where it might make takeovers, notably in India.

PARIS, Oct 17, 2006 (AFP) - French food giant Danone said on Tuesday that sales in the third quarter of the year had grown by 4.1 percent on a 12-month comparison, boosted by activity in emerging countries where it might make takeovers, notably in India.

Third-quarter sales totalled EUR 3.555 billion and the company also raised its forecast for growth of sales by current activities.

Danone is the leading world producer of fresh dairy products and the second-biggest global force in bottled water.

Company president and chief executive Franck Riboud told a press conference: "India is a country which interests us."

Danone might carry out "some operations" from 2007 in India where it was already present in the biscuit sector, and also in Chile, Colombia and Venezuela.

Sales in Asia had risen by 20.1 percent in the third quarter.

When changes in the company's scope of activities and exchange rates were taken into account, Danone's third-quarter rate of growth in sales was 9.5 percent, boosted in particular by beverage sales in Asia, the group said.

"Based on the sales performance to date and the outlook for the fourth quarter, Danone now expects organic sales growth for the full year 2006 to be above 8.0 percent," a statement added.

The previous forecast has estimated sales would rise by 7-8 percent this year. The price of shares in Danone was showing a fall of 0.09 percent to EUR 111.40 in mid-day trading. The overall French market as measured by the CAC 40 index had shed 0.60 percent.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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