Gripen fighter maker Saab lands Q1 profit beat

Adds detail, background

STOCKHOLM, April 23 (Reuters) - Swedish defence company Saab SAABb.ST reported first-quarter operating earnings above market expectations on Friday and reiterated its outlook for 2021.

The maker of the Gripen fighter jet said large orders in its defence-related business had boosted order intake, while the downturn in the civil aviation market was still affecting other parts of its business.

Saab kept its forecast for adjusted operating margins this year to be in line with 2020, organic sales growth of around 5% and positive cash flow.

"Apart from international expansion, our priority in 2021 is to increase focus on operational efficiency," Chief Executive Mikael Johansson said in a statement.

Saab's first-quarter operating profit rose to 597 million Swedish crowns ($70.89 million) from 560 million a year ago, compared to a mean forecast based on three analyst estimates of 430 million, according to Refinitiv data.

Quarterly order bookings increased 22% to 5.87 billion crowns, while organic sales growth was 14%.

($1 = 8.4213 Swedish crowns)

(Reporting by Helena Soderpalm; editing by Niklas Pollard)

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


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