Esselte expects 2005 lift

Esselte has reported a 1.5 per cent decrease in its Q1 sales to $319.9 million, compared with $324.7 million last year.

The privately-held Swedish company posted a net loss of $18.5 million, compared to a net loss of $9.5 million registered in Q1 2004.

President/CEO Magnus Nicolin said: "We are pleased with improvements in a number of key areas in the first quarter of 2005. Despite a decline in reported net sales, we reported a reduction in our net debt.

"With continued management of our operating expenses and working capital, we expect to see further improvement in our operating results in 2005," he added.