Boosted by Airbus Orders, Rolls-Royce Profits Soar in 2011

'We continue to benefit from a broad portfolio, a large and growing customer base and access to markets where demand remains strong for our products and services.'

Aircraft-engine maker Rolls-Royce Holdings PLC reported soaring 2011 profits on Thursday and raised its shareholder dividend, lifted by strong demand for civilian and military jet engines.

Net profit jumped 57% to $1.35 billion last year, compared with earnings after tax of $849.1 million in 2010, the London-listed company said.

Pre-tax profit grew 21% to a record $1.8 billion from $1.5 billion last time around. That was in line with analysts' estimates, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

The order book increased by 5% to a record $98 billion, boosted by Airbus engine orders from Air France-KLM, Asiana, Cathay Pacific and Singapore Airlines.

"Rolls-Royce performed well in 2011," Chief Executive John Rishton said in a news release.

"We continue to benefit from a broad portfolio, a large and growing customer base and access to markets where demand remains strong for our products and services."

Rolls-Royce said it expects to achieve continued earnings growth this year.

"Our order book gives us good visibility of future revenues and demonstrates the confidence our customers have in us," Rishton added.

"For 2012, we expect good growth both in underlying revenue and underlying profit with cash flow around breakeven as we continue to invest in future growth."

Last year, Rolls-Royce and Daimler completed a joint takeover of German industrial-engines group Tognum.

Rishton added: "We see opportunities for profitable growth across our portfolio.

"In particular, the acquisition of Tognum, that we have made in partnership with Daimler, adds significantly to the breadth of our portfolio and will accelerate growth."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2012

Note: Currencies have been converted from pounds to dollars, based on conversion rates as of the morning of Feb. 10.

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