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* Q1 EPS C$0.33 vs year earlier share loss C$0.19
* Analysts expected C$0.20/shr
* Revenue up 20.2 percent at C$510.7 million
TORONTO, May 5 (Reuters) - Linamar Corp (LNR.TO) reported a quarterly profit on Wednesday as a pickup in the auto sector, along with recent cost cuts, helped the Canadian maker of auto parts and other precision machined components beat analysts' expectations.
Linamar reported earnings of C$21.6 million ($21 million), or 33 Canadian cents a share, for the first quarter. That compares with a loss of C$12.6 million, or 19 Canadian cents, a year earlier, when the auto industry was mired a massive downturn.
Analysts had expected, on average, a profit of 20 Canadian cents a share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Sales at the Guelph, Ontario-based company, at C$510.7 million, were up 20.2 percent from a year earlier.
"We have started off the year on a very positive note with continued sales and earnings growth both from Q1 a year ago and the fourth quarter of 2009," Linamar Chief Executive Linda Hasenfratz said in a release.
"The combination of our strong backlog of new business coupled with market growth in key markets will be key drivers of our success in 2010."
Linamar also said on Wednesday it has formed a strategic alliance with German-based NCB Lohmann GmbH to build wind turbine components for customers in North America.
The company will manufacture parts for large wind turbines at its Guelph, Ontario, plant beginning later this year. [ID:nN05198062]
Linamar reported its results after market close. Its shares ended the day up 59 Canadian cents, or 2.9 percent, at C$21.20 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
Last year, during the downturn, when the company posted its first-quarter results its stock was worth around C$4.50.
$1=$1.03 Canadian Reporting by John McCrank; editing by Peter Galloway