Bayer warns of increasing competition

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The Independent Online
BAYER, the German chemical and pharmaceutical group, yesterday signalled increased competition in the industry and said it expected a fall in profits for 1992, writes Heather Connon.

The group warned that there was no sign of recovery in its markets and said it expected no fundamental improvement in the second half. 'We are bracing ourselves for tougher competition in all areas,' the group said.

The warning came as Bayer announced a 9.8 per cent fall in pre- tax income to DM1.7bn ( pounds 626m) in the first half, on sales static at DM22.2bn. Earnings in Germany fell 13.7 per cent to DM967m as pressure on prices continued.

Meanwhile, Rhone Poulenc, the French chemical and healthcare group, reported a 22 per cent rise in operating income to Ffr4bn ( pounds 420m) in the six months to June. The advance was largely due to its healthcare business, where operating income rose a third to Ffr2.15bn.