May 28, 2010 / 12:45 PM / in 7 years

UPDATE 2-Garda World Q1 profit jumps on lower expenses

* Q1 EPS C$0.20 vs C$0.08 yr ago

* Revenue down 2 pct at C$272.3 mln

* Shares soar as much as 13 pct

* Says looking at small-sized acquisitions in Canada

* Expects Q1 trends to continue in Q2 (Adds CEO comments, details and updates share movement)

By Abhiram Nandakumar

BANGALORE, May 28 (Reuters) - Canada’s Garda World Security Corp GW.TO posted a quarterly profit that more than doubled, helped by lower expenses, sending shares up as much as 13 percent.

The company expects to get contracts from financial institutions and the retail sector in the United States in fiscal 2011, CEO Stephan Cretier told Reuters in an interview.

“We are focusing a lot on the retail industry in the U.S.”, Cretier said, adding that most of the growth will be coming from these two sectors for 2011.

The company, which also has operations in Latin America, Europe and the Middle East, is looking to make small-sized acquisitions, mostly in Canada, as it consolidates its position in the Canadian market.

“We do see ourselves doing some bolt-on acquisitions in certain markets, because small mom-n-pop outfits are struggling in this economy,” Cretier said.

Garda, which provides armored cars, cash-handling services, and automated teller machine maintenance, competes with Brink’s Co (BCO.N) and Swedish company Loomis AB (LOOMb.ST).

Cretier, who founded Garda in 1995 and owns 25 percent of the company, expects the first quarter trends to continue into the second quarter, and backed the company’s earlier outlook for 2011.

Garda posted a net income of C$6.3 million ($6.05 million), or 20 Canadian cents per basic share, compared with C$2.5 million, or 8 Canadian cents per basic share, reported a year ago.

Revenue fell 2 percent to C$272.3 million for the quarter ended April 30.

Analysts on average had expected earnings of 11 Canadian cents a share, before special items, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Garda, which operates across three segments -- Cash Logistics, Physical Security and Global Risk Consulting -- said financing expenses fell 27 percent and fixed costs, general and administrative expenses fell 21 percent.

Shares of the Montreal-based Garda jumped 13 percent to C$8.71, before paring some gains to trade at C$8.39 in afternoon trade Friday on the Toronto Stock Exchange. ($1=1.049 Canadian Dollar) (Reporting by Abhiram Nandakumar in Bangalore; Editing by Aradhana Aravindan)

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