Baar, Switzerland -- Sealants and adhesives group Sika AG has reported sales up by 2.3 percent in local currencies in the first quarter of 2010, including an acquisition effect of 1.3 percent, a 21 April company statement said. Lower building activity due to adverse winter weather conditions did, however, have a negative impact on sales in Europe and North America, Sika added.
Including a -1.7 percent effect from exchange rate fluctuations, sales in Q1 2010 grew 0.6 percent to CHF 894 million ($838 million), compared to the same period of the previous year, Sika said, adding that development in emerging markets "was of critical significance for this sales growth."
In local currencies, Sika reported sales up by 20 percent in IMEA (India, Middle East, Africa), by 16.8 percent in Asia-Pacific and by 44 percent, 31 percent, 23 percent and 20 percent in China, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia, respectively. In Latin America sales grew by 11.2 percent, the statement added.
However, Sika said, Q1 sales were down by 3.5 percent in Northern Europe to CHF 276.7 million and down 2.2 percent in Southern Europe to CHF 206.6 million, compared to Q1 2009. Sales in North America were down 2.3 percent to CHF 115.5 million, compared to the same period last year. According to Sika, the drop in sales was strongly influenced by lower building activity in Europe due to a "lingering and snowy winter."
Sika's product groups also reported a mixed performance with sales in construction products down by 1.5 percent, compared to Q1 2009, whilst sales in products for industrial manufacturing increased by 17.4 percent, year-on-year.
The Swiss company also had all proposals from its board approved by its shareholders at Sika's Annual General Meeting, held 20 April 2010, including a dividend to shareholders of around CHF 111.8 million -- accounting for around 50 percent of consolidated net profit. (RD)