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Weg Sees Sales Rising 12% in Europe as It Seeks Acquisitions

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April 2 (Bloomberg) -- Brazilian industrial-machinery maker Weg SA expects sales in Europe to grow as much as 12 percent this year as it seeks acquisitions and boosts its team, according to International Director Gustavo Iensen.

The company forecasts that net sales will increase 8 percent to 12 percent in 2012 from about 310 million euros ($412 million) last year, Iensen said in a telephone interview from the company’s headquarters in Santa Catarina, Brazil.

“In some European countries we have plenty of space to grow, in spite of the crisis,” said Iensen. “We are still optimistic and we are introducing new products.”

Weg plans to increase its team in Europe by as much as 10 percent, mostly in sales, he said. The company currently employs about 750 people in Europe, according to Iensen.

The company is currently seeking acquisitions in Europe in the field of electric engines and automation, Iensen said.

“We are targeting some companies already,” he said, declining to name them. The company is likely to make at least one acquisition in the second half, he said.

Weg also expects its core low-voltage motors business in Europe to benefit from a European Union law introduced last June which stipulates minimum efficiency levels for electric engines sold in the region, Iensen said.

Weg rose 1.1 percent to 20.01 reais at 4:53 p.m. in Sao Paulo. The benchmark Bovespa stock index climbed 1.3 percent.

-- Editor: Adriana Brasileiro

To contact the reporter on this story: Karen Eeuwens in London at keeuwens@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Helder Marinho at hmarinho@bloomberg.net

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