Global engineering firm GKN said improvements in its markets and a strong performance from recent acquisitions helped push up profits in the first quarter of the year.
Sales for the three months to the end of March totalled £1.74bn, a 17% increase over the comparable period in 2011, or an 8% increase on an underlying basis.
Pre tax profits were up 17% on the year before at £125m.
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The firm said that global light vehicle production had gone up 4% in the period, while civil aerospace had improved and there had been further growth in its agricultural and construction markets.
However, light vehicle production was a mixed picture on a regional level.
The firm saw good growth in Japan (+49%), North America (+15%) and India (+5%), which offset decline declines in Brazil (-10%), Europe (-8%), and China (-4%).
It added that the overall picture for GKN's markets remained in line with its February statement.
At that time the firm acknowledged that the macro-economic environment remained uncertain, while saying it expected 2012 to be a year of good progress.
In the current trading update Chief Executive, Nigel Stein,hailed an excellent start to the year.
"Last year's acquisitions, Getrag Driveline Products and Stromag, have been successfully integrated and both made a strong contribution," he said.
Despite some macro-economic uncertainty, we expect 2012 to be a year of good progress for GKN based on our market leadership positions, advanced technology and extensive global footprint."
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