Olivetti operating loss increases tenfold

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The Independent Online
OLIVETTI made an operating loss of between 300bn and 350bn lire ( pounds 138m- pounds 161m) last year compared with L28.3bn in 1991, according to the company's chairman, Carlo De Benedetti.

Mr De Benedetti did not comment on the potential impact of restructuring or exceptional charges, which in 1991 increased the group's total loss to L459.8bn. Full financial details for 1992 are expected within weeks.

Olivetti has suffered from price wars and over-capacity in the computer market. The prices of some personal computer products have fallen by about 40 per cent over the past two years and the battle for market share shows no sign of abating. In spite of this, Olivetti is expected to break even at the operating level this year and to make a profit in 1994.

Speaking at an industry conference at Davos, Switzerland, Mr De Benedetti called for greater cooperation between computer and telecommunications companies. 'I believe that today we can and we must launch a major new round of international alliances and partnerships,' he said.

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