Bloomberg News

Linde Third-Quarter Profit Beats Expectations on Growth in Asia

October 28, 2011

Oct. 28 (Bloomberg) -- Linde AG, the world’s second-biggest maker of industrial gases, reported third-quarter earnings that beat analyst estimates, helped by costs savings and higher demand in emerging markets.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization rose 7.3 percent to percent to 804 million euros ($1.14 billion), the Munich-based company said today in a statement. Analysts had predicted 796.4 million euros, according to the average of 14 estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

Linde struck a similar tone to French rival Air Liquide SA, which two days ago said that even as demand from developing countries boosted quarterly sales, customers are being “cautious.” Chief Executive Officer Wolfgang Reitzle is sticking to the company’s full-year targets for increased earnings and revenue and his aim to cut costs by as much as 800 million euros next year.

“Even if economic activity loses a little pace, we continue to see good growth opportunities for our business, especially in energy and the environment and in the emerging economies,” Reitzle said in the statement.

Quarterly sales rose to 3.44 billion euros from 3.3 billion euros, short of a 3.47 billion-euro estimate. Net income gained 15 percent to 290 million euros, in line with the 290.4 million- euro estimate of the Bloomberg survey.

The industrial gas maker is planning the savings buy buying more goods in low-cost countries and reducing the number of gas- production plants it offered.

Linde’s main growth driver remained Asia in the quarter and the company earlier this month won an order to build the largest nitrous oxide gas production plant in South Korea.

--Editor: Benedikt Kammel

To contact the reporter on this story: Sheenagh Matthews in Frankfurt at smatthews6@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Benedikt Kammel at bkammel@bloomberg.net


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