Mondi’s Profit Rises Even as It Takes Write Down

(Corrects headline and first paragraph to show profit rose even though the company took a restructuring charge.)

Mondi Ltd. (MND), a South African maker of paper and packaging, said second-quarter profit will be higher than in the previous three months even though took a charge as it restructured operations in Austria, Germany and its domestic market.

“The underlying operating profit for the second quarter of 2013 is expected to be higher than” the 162 million euros ($215 million) in the three months through March, the company said in a statement today. Profit will also be higher than in the second quarter last year, it said. Basic headline earnings per share will be 43 cents to 48 cents for the first half of 2013, compared with 30.9 cents a year ago.

The Johannesburg-based company’s restructuring plans in Europe and South Africa resulted in a special items charge of 68 million euros, according to the statement. Mondi is reducing exposure to sluggish economies by expanding in developing markets such as Eastern Europe.

Mondi’s shares rose as much as 6 percent to 147.21 rand in Johannesburg, the highest since Bloomberg began tracking the stock in 2007. They traded 5.7 percent higher as of 10:44 a.m. Mondi has gained 60 percent this year, the fourth best-performing stock on the 166-company FTSE/JSE Africa All-Share Index. (JALSH)

To contact the reporter on this story: Kamlesh Bhuckory in Johannesburg at kbhuckory@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Simon Thiel at sthiel1@bloomberg.net

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