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ZURICH, March 7 (Reuters) - Swiss chocolate maker Lindt & Spruengli increased its dividend and said it expected organic sales to again grow around 6 percent this year after a lower tax rate helped boost its net profit in 2016.
Global chocolate demand is down as consumers tend to prefer healthier snacks, but Lindt bucks that trend by marketing its Easter bunnies and Lindor chocolate balls as high-quality treats customers can indulge in at special moments.
Net profit at the group based in Kilchberg near Zurich rose 10 percent to 420 million Swiss francs ($415.2 million) last year, allowing it to raise its dividend by 10 percent to 880 francs per registered share, Lindt said on Tuesday. Net profit and the dividend were in line with forecasts in a Reuters poll.
$1 = 1.0116 Swiss francs Reporting by Silke Koltrowitz