May 16, 2018 / 5:19 AM / in a year

French group Alstom posts higher annual sales and profits

PARIS, May 16 (Reuters) - French manufacturing group Alstom , which has agreed to merge its rail operations with Germany’s Siemens, reported a rise in annual sales and profits and forecast further growth in profits in the medium term.

Alstom’s sales for its 2017/2018 financial year rose by 9 percent from the previous year to 7.951 billion euros ($9.4 billion), while adjusted earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) climbed 22 percent to 514 million euros.

Alstom also proposed a dividend of 0.35 euros, up 40 percent from last year, while its EBIT margin rose to 6.5 percent from 5.8 percent.

Last year, Siemens and Alstom agreed to merge their rail operations, creating a European champion to challenge the advance of China’s state-owned CRRC.

Alstom said it expected sales of around 8 billion euros for next year, and an EBIT margin of up to 7 percent.

“Alstom continued to leverage the growing globalisation of the mobility market and is now in excellent position to join forces with Siemens Mobility,” said Alstom Chairman and Chief Executive Henri Poupart-Lafarge in a statement.

$1 = 0.8450 euros Reporting by Cyril Altmeyer; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta

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