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Growing Chinese demand drives sharp acceleration in Porsche's profits


China's growing wealth and its rising demand for luxury cars underpinned strong growth in Porsche's profits, which climbed to more than €1bn (£874m) over the first six months of the year.

The German sports car manufacturer posted a sharp jump in first-half operating profits to €1.1bn yesterday, up from €675m last year, as revenues over the six-month period climbed by nearly 19 per cent to €5.22bn. The rise in profits points to an operating margin of about 20 per cent, confirming Porsche's strength relative to rival luxury car makers such as BMW and Mercedes.

Sales in China, which has swiftly become the world's biggest car market, were up by 47 per cent in the first half.

In all, China accounted for about 20 per cent of Porsche's overall sales. The gains leave Porsche, which also saw a 25-per-cent rise in North American sales, well placed to achieve its worldwide target of more than 100,000 cars in 2011.

Yesterday's results came on the heels of figures fromVolkswagen, which last week forecast a strong rise in full-year profits amid growing international demand for its Audi and VW models.