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Fugro H1 net surges on increasing exploration for oil

Fugro NV, the world's largest surveyor of deepwater oil fields, said net result for the first six months of 2006 increases by 68.5% as increasing demand for exploration services allowed the company to raise prices. Net income rose to € 54.1 million ($69.1 million), or 74 cents a share, from € 32.1 million, or 48 cents a share, a year earlier, the company on its website today. All three divisions made an excellent contribution. Revenue for the H1 of 2006 increased by 25.9% to € 652.4 million from 2005’s € 518.2 million. Fugro is benefiting from continuing favorable market conditions, in particular in the oil and gas sector and mining, as well as from the upswing in the market for infrastructure related work.
Analysts had predicted Fugro would earn € 50 million, according to the median estimate of seven analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. Sales rose to € 652 million from € 518 million.
Oil companies have boosted exploration spending, enabling Leidschendam, Netherlands-based Fugro to raise prices as much as 30%. The company is surveying in areas such as West Africa and offshore fields in the Far East for the first time and may work in East Africa as companies scour the world for new fields. The earnings were published before the stock market opened. Fugro shares yesterday rose 0.8%, or 26 cents, to 33.89, valuing the company at € 2.3 billion. The stock has risen 25% this year, making them the fourth-best performer among the 25 stocks in the Amsterdam Midkap Index.
The company's net income last year more than doubled to € 99.4 million from € 49.3 million a year earlier. The high level of backlog maintained, increase of 35% compared to mid 2005. The acquisition of Seacore Ltd. (United Kingdom) was also successfully completed. During the H1 of 2006 the number of employees rose by 7.3% to 9,161. (Bloomberg,