Porsche net profits up

Luxury sports car maker Porsche AG confirmed Monday that net profit soared in the fiscal first half of 2007, boosted primarily by a gain from its stake in Volkswagen AG. Net profit rose to euro1.14 billion (US$1.5 billion) in the half ending Jan. 31, higher than the euro1.05 billion (US$1.38 billion) preliminary figure reported in January at the company's annual general meeting, compared to euro170 million in the same period a year earlier.

Porsche's 27.3 percent Volkswagen stake contributed a more than a euro1 billion (US$1.32 billion) gain while the revaluation of Volkswagen shares held by Porsche yielded another euro520 million (US$684.48 million), the company said.

"Since the start of our investment in Europe's biggest automotive group around a year and a half ago, Porsche's share price has risen by 50 percent and Volkswagen's share price has doubled," the company said in a statement. "Any initial doubtful voices in relation to our shareholding in VW have long since faded."

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