May 8, 2008 / 8:29 PM / in 9 years

UPDATE 1-Linamar profit rises as Asia, European ops deliver

(Adds details, stock price)

TORONTO, May 8 (Reuters) -Linamar Corp LNR.TO reported a rise in first-quarter profit on Thursday as revenue rose due in part to strong growth in Europe and a ramping up of the company’s Asian operations.

The company, which makes precision automotive components for engines and transmissions, said it earned C$29.5 million ($28.9 million), or 43 Canadian cents a share, in the three months ended March 31. That was up from a profit of C$26.7 million, or 38 Canadian cents a share, in the same period a year earlier.

Guelph, Ontario-based Linamar said sales rose to C$614.5 million from C$579.4 million a year earlier.

It said part of the gain in revenue came from the ramping up of key programs that were in their startup phase in the first quarter of last year.

As well, it said its acquisition of a driveline plant in Mexico in late 2007, strong European growth and the continuing growth in its operations in Asia all helped.

Linamar released its results after markets closed. During the day, its shares rose 26 Canadian cents to finish at C$14.56 on the Toronto Stock Exchange. ($1=$1.02 Canadian) (Reporting by Wojtek Dabrowski; editing by Rob Wilson)

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