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AkzoNobel: second-quarter profit down, but margins resist

( - AkzoNobel has reported a 33% drop in second-quarter operating profit, blaming the Covid-19 pandemic, which has weighed on demand.

The Dutch maker of paints and coatings said operating income fell from 308 millions euros to 207 million euros year-on-year, as sales dropped by 19% to 2.5 billion euros.

Revenue fell by almost 30% in April, but decreased by just 5% in June, the group said in a statement.

Despite lower sales, Akzo managed to increase its margin by 30 basis points to 14% in the past quarter, helped by strong cost-saving measures, it added.

The company said it delivered cost savings of 116 million euros over the quarter, including 38 million euros structural savings related to transformation initiatives.

Investors weren't impressed, however, with the shares down slightly (-0.5%) on Euronext Amsterdam on Wednesday morning.

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