Finland's Valmet shares rise nearly 5% after record Q1 orders

HELSINKI, April 22 (Reuters) - Finland’s Valmet posted a better-than-expected rise in first-quarter revenue and profit on Thursday, while its order intake hit a record, pushing the engineering company’s shares nearly 5% higher.

First quarter order intake rose to 1.3 billion euros from 1.2 billion last year. Profit of 76 million euros beat a mean estimate of 52.6 million euros from 8 analysts polled by Reuters and was up from 42 million euros a year ago.

Valmet’s shares were 4.6 percent higher at 35 euros at 1337 GMT.

“Orders received increased in the Pulp and Energy, Paper, and Automation business lines and remained at the previous year’s level in the Services business line,” Chief Executive Pasi Laine said in a statement.

Earnings per share rose to 0.38 euros from 0.20 last year, beating analysts’ forecast of 0.25 euros.

Valmet said the short-term market outlook for its automation, pulp, board and paper, and tissue businesses was good, but weak for the energy sector.

Reporting by Essi Lehto; Editing by Kirsten Donovan