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Henkel registers robust organic sales growth
May '08
“We made a good start to the fiscal year within a challenging economic environment. Our robust organic sales growth, achieved despite a sluggish US market and a strong prior-year quarter, is encouraging.

All our business sectors have contributed to this,” said Kasper Rorsted, Chief Executive Officer of Henkel.“Development in our growth regions was again dynamic. I am very confident that we will meet the targets we have set ourselves for fiscal 2008.

We expect the acquisition and integration of the National Starch businesses to further boost growth. In addition, the implementation of our 'Global Excellence' efficiency enhancement program is proceeding on schedule.”

In the first quarter of 2008, Henkel increased sales adjusted for foreign exchange by 1.7 percent. Organic sales, i.e. adjusted for foreign exchange and acquisitions/ divestments, increased by 3.3 percent and was within the 3 to 4 percentage range of Henkel's guidance given at the beginning of the year.

All business sectors Henkel, Corporate contributed to this performance. Overall, sales fell slightly to 3,162 million euros in the first quarter of 2008, mainly as a result of unfavorable movements in foreign exchange.

At 320 million euros, operating profit (EBIT) was roughly at the high level of the previous year (-0.9 percent). After adjusting for foreign exchange, EBIT growth amounted to 2.5 percent.

The substantial increase in raw material costs, which Henkel was unable to completely offset, had a particularly negative influence. Return on sales (EBIT) amounted to 10.1 percent, 0.1 percentage points above the level of the prior-year quarter.

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