Paint maker Akzo Nobel sees profits thin in third quarter

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Dutch-Swedish chemical and paint group Akzo Nobel said Thursday that third quarter net profits fell 37.4 percent due to a rise in raw materials costs, but stuck to its annual forecasts.

Net profit fell to 149 million euros ($204 million) in the quarter despite sales rising five percent to 4.05 billion, as raw materials costs rose 15 percent while the world's top paint maker kept its sales prices steady.

"Although our top-line revenue growth throughout the quarter was relatively strong, we have seen the macroeconomic situation worsen which has impacted our third quarter results," CEO Hans Wijers said in a statement.

The company said it expected raw material costs to continue to rise, but at a slower pace, and has launched a performance improvement drive to try to deliver 500 million euros savings by 2014.

Akzo Nobel however confirmed its annual target of 1.96 billion euros in earnings before interest, tax and depreciation and amortisation charges.

© 2011 AFP

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