May 8, 2018 / 5:42 AM / in a year

UPDATE 1-DSM's Q1 net profit doubles on high vitamin prices

(Adds CEO quote, more details on sales and performance)

AMSTERDAM, May 8 (Reuters) - Dutch speciality chemicals company DSM on Tuesday said its net profit more than doubled in the first quarter to 331 million euros ($394.3 million), as supply disruptions at competitors drove prices for its vitamins substantially higher.

DSM confirmed preliminary figures, which showed earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose 56 percent to 538 million euros in the first three months of the year.

Total sales grew 11 percent in the first quarter, excluding the temporary vitamin boost and adverse currency effects, with an almost equally strong growth in its nutritional and materials divisions, the company said.

DSM’s products range from food ingredients, such as vitamins and enzymes, to fabrics and plastics used in cars, garments and construction.

“We are very pleased that the strong underlying performance of our business continues, with growth well above market,” Chief Executive Feike Sijbesma said in a statement.

Last month, the company raised its 2018 forecast for adjusted EBITDA growth to “towards” 25 percent, as it expects sales to keep rising and costs to drop, while the effect of high vitamin prices will likely ebb in the second half of the year.

The vitamin price benefit added 165 million euros to EBITDA in the first quarter, with the total effect for 2018 estimated between 250 million euros and 300 million euros.

$1 = 0.8395 euros Reporting by Bart Meijer; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu and Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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