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Eramet swings to €203M profit in 2017 on favorable metals market

Eramet booked attributable net income of €203 million in 2017, swinging from a year-ago net loss of €179 million on the back of a favorable metals market.

The group's results included an impairment of €42 million, compared to €167 million recorded in 2016, according to a Feb. 20 release.

Operating income soared 624% year over year to €608 million, helped by price developments in manganese as well as €99 million in productivity gains.

The company's sales grew 22% on a yearly basis to €3.65 billion.

Eramet's manganese division, in particular, achieved a record year with sales rising 33% to €1.92 billion and operating income jumping 237% to €738 million.

Manganese alloys output rose 2% to 716,000 tonnes, but sales declined 4% to 699,000 tonnes. Manganese ore and sinter production jumped 22% to 4.2 million tonnes.

Nickel production and sales increased 7% and 4%, respectively, to 59,183 tonnes and 58,488 tonnes.

The company will resume dividend payments and will seek approval at its May 24 annual meeting for a payout of €2.30 per share.

Eramet reduced its net debt to €376 million, from €836 million at the end of 2016.