March 5, 2009 / 11:34 PM / 9 years ago

UPDATE 1-Opta Minerals swings to Q4 loss

* Q4 loss $0.12/shr vs profit $0.01/shr last year

* Revenue falls 13 pct

* Abrasive, steel and foundry product sales weak

* Cuts 13 pct of workforce in Q4

March 5 (Reuters) - Canada’s Opta Minerals Inc OPM.TO swung to a fourth-quarter loss and said it cut 30 staff positions during the quarter.

The workforce reduction was part of the company’s cost-saving measures implemented to realign operations with customer demand.

The provider of industrial mineral products posted a net loss of $2.2 million, or 12 cents a share, compared with net earnings of $235,000, or 1 cent a share, a year earlier.

Revenue came in at $17.4 million. Excluding the acquisition of France’s MCP Mg-Serbien SAS in 2008, revenue dropped by 23 percent, the company said.

Opta Minerals, in which SunOpta Inc SOY.TO has a 66.2 percent stake, said results were hurt by a $2.8 million write-down of the value of magnesium raw material inventory to its estimated net realizable value. (Reporting by Krishna Chaithanya in Bangalore; Editing by Anne Pallivathuckal)

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