Lagardere posts decline in annual net profit

13th March 2007, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, March 12, 2007 (AFP) - French media and technology group Lagardere on Monday posted disppointing annual net profits, due partly to a fall in income from its stake in the troubled European aerospace group EADS, the parent group of plane-maker Airbus.

PARIS, March 12, 2007 (AFP) - French media and technology group Lagardere on Monday posted disppointing annual net profits, due partly to a fall in income from its stake in the troubled European aerospace group EADS, the parent group of plane-maker Airbus.

Lagardere's chief executive Arnaud Lagardere, who is also co-chairman of EADS' management board, also said the group did not currently need to raise fresh funds through a capital hike, as has been mooted by French politicians.

Lagardere said in a statement that it made net profit of 291 milion euros (382 million dollars) in 2006, down from 670 million euros the year before.

That was well short of the 413-million-euro analyst consensus compiled by Thomson Financial.

The contribution from the stake in the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company (EADS) shrank to just 23 millon euros after 266 million in 2005.

Excluding the EADS stake, net profit in the core media business was 268  million euros, down from 404 million, the company said.

Arnaud Lagardere said at a pres conference after publication of the company's results: "I am not in favour of a capital hike for EADS, it is not a matter for (discussion) today."

He added that he has no plans to sell Lagardere's remaining 7.5 percent stake in EADS.

"The 7.5 percent stake that still belongs to us is not for sale. We don't abandon ship in a storm," Lagardere said.

The EADS share price has fallen 15 percent since the group released details on February 28 of a sweeping restructuring plan aimed at re-vitalizing Airbus, which suffered its first-ever operating loss in 2006 because of production problems in its A380 superjumbo programme.

Copyright AFP

SUbject: French news

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