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Saab's Second-Quarter Profit Rose 48%

Swedish aerospace and defense company Saab's net profit rose 48% in the second quarter, driven by solid results from its defense and security solutions, and systems and product divisions, the company said Friday.

Saab posted a profit of 630 million kronor (69 million euros; $95 million) for the period that ended June 30, up from 404 million kronor in the same period last year.

The Stockholm-based company said revenue for the second quarter increased to 5.94 billion kronor (649 million euros; $895 million), up from 5.15 billion kronor in the same period in 2006.

CEO Ake Svensson said the first half of 2007 had been "a stable, forward-looking period for Saab."

"Order bookings remained satisfactory, sales increased and income was stable," he said. "During the second quarter, important acquisitions were complemented by future-oriented partnerships of major significance."

Orders for the second quarter came in at 2.95 billion kronor (322 million euros; $444 million), compared with 11.43 billion kronor for the same period last year.

Saab shares were up 3% at 187 kronor, outperforming a broader higher Nordic market.

Swedbank analyst Mats Liss said net profit and margins were good, although the order book was a bit on the weak side. However, he said the orders vary a lot between quarters and that the outlook seems positive.

Saab said second-quarter sales for Defense and Security Solutions rose to 2.26 billion kronor (247 million euros; $341 million), up from 1.93 billion kronor in the second quarter, mainly due to the increased scope of the new business unit Saab Surveillance Systems.

Saab sold its automobile division to General Motors in 2000.

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