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Savola Group Q1 profit rises 43%

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s Savola Group posted a 43 percent rise in first-quarter profit, beating analysts’ estimates as the food producer expanded its market share in the retail sector, revenue rose and financial charges fell.
The company made a profit of SR423 million ($112.8 million) in the first three months of 2014, up from SR295 million in the year-earlier period, according to a statement to Riyadh’s bourse.
Analysts polled by Reuters on average had forecast Savola would make a quarterly profit of SR323 million.
The firm, a producer of cooking oil, sugar and other foodstuffs, attributed its higher net profit to growth in revenue, increased market share in the retail sector, lower finance charges and larger profits from an affiliate. It did not provide further details.
Savola expects its second-quarter net income before any capital gains to be SR410 million, CEO Abdulraouf Mannaa said in the statement.