China pulls Philips sales higher

THE HAGUE (AFP) – Dutch electronics giant Philips posted yesterday a 6.0 per cent rise in comparable sales for the second quarter, driven by growth in demand for diagnosis and treatment equipment in China and Europe.

Sales topped EUR4.7 billion, up from EUR4.3 billion over the same period in 2018, the Amsterdam-based company said.

Net profit from ongoing operations jumped by 28 per cent to EUR260 million from 186 million year-on-year, it said in a statement.

“I am pleased with the 6.0 per cent comparable sales growth in the second quarter, with all businesses contributing,” Philips Chief Executive Frans van Houten said.

“We continue to expect our performance momentum to further improve in the second half of the year, supported by sales growth and our productivity programmes,” Van Houten said, adding the group will “maintain our overall targets of four to six per cent sales growth.”

Its image-guided therapy equipment did particularly well, driven by double-digit growth in China and high single digit growth in central and western Europe, Philips said.

Best known for its lighting business, Philips now focusses its activities on high-tech medical equipment and services as well as lifestyle products.

The group, which sold its first light bulb a few years after it was founded in 1891, spun off and listed its Philips Lighting division, now known as Signify, on the Amsterdam stock exchange in March last year.