(Adds details, sales, forecast)
VIENNA May 4 Austrian engineering group Andritz
reported a higher-than-expected net profit for the
first quarter, supported by strong demand in its pulp and paper,
and metals businesses.
Net profit rose 20 percent to 63 million euros ($68.63
million) in the three months to March, the group said on
Thursday. Analysts polled by Reuters on average had expected
57.4 million euros.
Rising demand for pulp, particularly from Chinese paper
producers, and new orders for its metals unit from international
automotive suppliers helped lift its profit, Andritz said.
Order intake improved 25.1 percent to 1.56 billion euros,
compared with an average forecast of 1.38 billion euros in a
Reuters poll of analysts.
Sales increased 7.8 percent to 1.39 billion euros.
The group confirmed it expects to at least achieve stable
sales and margins in the current year, based on solid demand for
its machines for tissue and paper production and for the pumps
it provides for hydropower plants.
($1 = 0.9179 euros)
(Reporting by Kirsti Knolle; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath and