Oslo / NO. (ok) Orkla ASA´s operating profit (Ebita) totalled 736 million NOK in the first quarter of 2014. This was an improvement of 23 percent from the corresponding quarter of 2013. Orkla´s operating revenues were 8’306 million NOK, up from 7’219 million NOK in the same period of last year. Operating profit for Orkla´s branded consumer goods business increased by 13 percent to 655 million NOK in the quarter. Orkla Foods realised substantial cost synergies as a result of the integration of Rieber + Søn, while Orkla Confectionery + Snacks reported a fall in operating profit in the quarter. Orkla Home + Personal and Orkla Food Ingredients achieved improved results. Although Orkla Brands Russia continued to post a negative operating result, the other businesses contributed to profit improvement for Orkla International. Orkla´s branded consumer goods business had a turnover of 6’970 million NOK, equivalent to a rise of 17 percent. This growth is ascribable to acquisitions and favourable currency translation effects. «Seen in isolation, I am pleased with the improvement in profit this quarter, but our biggest challenge is to create organic growth in sales. A number of initiatives will contribute towards achieving this objective. We will focus on fewer, but bigger innovations, and direct more resources and marketing towards our strongest brands. In time, we will see the results of these systematic efforts», says Orkla President and CEO Peter A. Ruzicka. Details about «Gränges» aluminium, «Hydro Power», «Sapa» extruded aluminium products and «Jotun» paints and coatings are available on orkla.com. Orkla´s total profit before tax amounted to 639 million NOK, compared with 900 million NOK in Q1/2013.