MILAN, July 22 (Reuters) - Italian car parts maker Sogefi on Tuesday reported a first-half net loss, hit by restructuring costs, the negative impact of the strong euro on South American currencies and a sharp slowdown in the Brazilian market.
The group, one of the world's key producers of engine systems and suspension components, reported a net loss of 7.3 million euros ($9.8 million), against a net profit of 16.2 million euros in the same period last year. The net result was impacted by non-recurring expenses of 17.4 million euros.
The company, owned by Italy's De Benedetti family through its CIR holding, said the global car market would grow this year, driven by China, India and North America, while the situation in Europe is expected to remain stable.
The markets in South America are expected to remain week.
Sogefi said it would focus this year on increasing its presence outside Europe and boost efficiency in its European operations.
$1 = 0.7417 Euros Reporting by Agnieszka Flak, editing by Danilo Masoni