The net profit of German chemical and pharmaceutical concern Bayer AG jumped 40% to EUR 2.09 billion in the first quarter, compared to EUR 1.49 billion in the same period of the previous year.
Bayer said EBITDA, excluding one-off factors, fell 6 percent to 4.12 billion euros in January-March, while revenues fell 4 percent to 12.33 billion euros.
The company recorded negative free cash flow (FCF) of EUR 3.23 billion in the first quarter, mainly due to payments to settle claims related to the Roundup herbicide in the US. The agreements already made cover some 96,000 claims filed against the company over Roundup, and it continues to negotiate with representatives of the other claimants.
Sales of Bayer's agricultural business (Crop Science), which includes seed and crop protection products, fell 3% to EUR 6.65 billion. Revenues in the Pharmaceuticals division fell 4% to EUR 4.37 billion, and those of the Consumer Health over-the-counter division fell 10% to EUR 1.25 billion.
The company reiterated its forecast for 2021 with revenues of EUR 42-43 billion and adjusted EBITDA of EUR 11.2-11.5 billion.
Bayer shares are rising in trading today. Since the beginning of the year, they have risen by almost 15%.