Danone 'in a robust position'

Paris: Danone has reported an 8.1% increase in half-year underlying net profit to €663m (£447m) on sales up 8.6% at €7.6bn (£5.1bn). Like-for-like sales rose 8.6%. "This performance places us in a robust position as Danone enters the next exciting phase of development, fully focused on health, totally international in character and which has an even stronger growth profile," said chairman and CEO Franck Riboud. Danone is selling its biscuits division to Kraft Foods and has made an offer worth €12.3bn (£8.3bn) for Numico, the supplier of Cow & Gate. It is also in a legal dispute with its Chinese partner Wahaha Group, but said it could not judge the impact the dispute would have on future earnings.