German fertiliser giant K+S eyes better 2013, 2014

K+S, one of the world's leading makers of fertilisers, said Thursday that it expected a slightly better 2013 and 2014 after last year's results were hit by a drop in potash prices and a late winter.

"All in all, we expect the K+S Group to achieve a slight increase in revenues and operating earnings," its chief Norbert Steiner said in a written statement.

"For 2014, we also see opportunities for a slight increase in revenues and earnings in comparison to 2013," he added.

The group said net profit grew last year by 18 percent to 667.6 million euros ($864.9 million) with the inclusion of a nitrogen fertiliser activity that it stopped mid-year, but fell by more than 13 percent when one-off items were excluded.

Revenues for 2012 slipped by 1.5 percent to 3.9 billion euros while underlying profit, as measured by earnings before interest, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), fell 9.5 percent to 1.04 billion euros, it said.

It added that the last quarter of the year had been hit by price pressure on potassium chloride and a winter season that began late in North America leading to a lower use of salt for gritting roads.

But the company stressed that overall 2012 had been successful.

"Our potash and magnesium products business unit achieved its second best result ever," Steiner said.