March 22, 2017 / 6:37 AM / 5 months ago

Lenzing sees better 2017 after in-line 2016 operating profit

VIENNA, March 22 (Reuters) - Austrian special textiles maker Lenzing's 2016 operating profit almost doubled to 296.3 million euros ($320.06 million) and it expects a "considerable" improvement in results this year if the fibre market and currency rates stay stable.

Lenzing said on Wednesday its margin on earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) also almost doubled to 13.9 percent in 2016, mainly driven by higher fibre prices, higher sales and its focus on more specialised textiles.

The average estimate in a Reuters poll of analysts was for operating profit of 302 million euros. Lenzing reiterated it aims to pay a dividend of 3 euros per share in addition to a special dividend of 1.20 euros for 2016.

$1 = 0.9258 euros Reporting By Shadia Nasralla; Editing by Maria Sheahan

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