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Porsche says full year profit more than triples

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Luxury sports car maker Porsche AG said Monday that its net profit for fiscal 2007 more than tripled with help from a revaluation of its 22 per cent stake in Volkswagen AG and strong results from its core business.

Porsche said it earned 4.24 billion euros ($6.18 billion) for the full year, up from 1.39 billion euros a year earlier. The revaluation resulted in a one-time gain of 520.80 million euros ($759.27 million).

Pretax profit for the year ended July 31 more than doubled to 5.86 billion euros ($8.54 billion) from 2.11 billion euros in the prior fiscal year.

The Stuttgart-based automaker said the earnings contribution of its core business improved compared with last year, excluding special factors such as a ``high three-digit million euro development expenditure'' for Porsche's fourth model series, the Panamera, and for the hybrid drivetrain of the Cayenne sport utility vehicle. Another factor was the weaker level of hedging rates versus the U.S. dollar.

Porsche said in September that sales for fiscal 2007 rose 3.4 per cent on the year to 7.4 billion euros ($10.79 billion), helped by a better model mix. Car sales for fiscal 2007 totaled 97,515 compared to 96,794 a year earlier, the company said at the time.

Porsche proposes to increase its dividend to 21.94 euros ($31.99) per common share from 8.94 euros last year and 22.00 euros ($32.07) per preferred share from 9.00 euros in fiscal 2006. This will raise the total dividend payment to 384 million euros ($559.8 million) for fiscal year 2007 after 157 million euros last year.

Shares in the Stuttgart-based company initially jumped on the news of the dividend, then plunged 8.52 per cent to 1,570 euros ($2,288.90) after the company announced it would suggest splitting the stock into 10 shares for each one now held at its next general annual meeting.

The meeting is scheduled for Jan. 25 in Stuttgart.

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Porsche says full year profit more than triples
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