This was primarily due to increasing sales in the Precious Metals Products and Catalysts businesses coupled with cost reduction measures, it said.

Nevertheless, the second half figures show an 18% reduction in revenues compared to the same period of 2008; earnings before interest and taxes slashed to just over 40% of the previous year at €146 million (€354 million), and net recurring profit for the period at €82 million hammered to less than 37% of the 2008 figure of €222 million.
 
The company expects that earnings before interest and taxes will show a marked improvement during 2010, reflecting the full-year impact of the cost reduction programmes initiated in 2009.