January 26, 2018 / 6:15 AM / a year ago

CORRECTED-Givaudan raises dividend after double-digit profit increase

(Corrects net profit rise in lede to 11.7 pct (not 8.3 pct))

ZURICH, Jan 26 (Reuters) - Fragrance and flavour maker Givaudan proposed raising its 2017 dividend after net profit rose 11.7 percent last year, helped by strong sales growth in the fourth quarter.

"Givaudan completed the year with good business momentum and with the project pipeline and win rates being sustained at high levels," the Swiss company said on Friday. "The company continues to implement price increases in collaboration with its customers to fully compensate for the increases in input costs."

The net profit rise to 720 million Swiss francs ($766.45 million) far exceeded the average estimate of 637 million francs and beat even the highest estimate in a Reuters poll of analysts.

Sales at the company competing with Germany's Symrise and U.S.-based IFF rose 4.9 percent on a like-for-like basis to 5.05 billion francs, above the 4.995 billion franc forecast in the poll, due to good growth across all its product segments and geographies.

$1 = 0.9394 Swiss francs Reporting by Brenna Hughes Neghaiwi and Silke Koltrowitz; Editing by Michael Shields

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