UPDATE 1-Italian car parts maker Sogefi reports net loss, CEO steps down
MILAN Oct 21 (Reuters) - Italian car parts maker Sogefi reported on Tuesday a net loss for the first nine months of the year, hit by weakness in South America and costs for restructuring in Europe, and said Chief Executive Guglielmo Fiocchi would leave the company.
Sogefi - one of the world's leading makers of engine systems and suspension components - said in a statement that the 51-year-old CEO and the company had "by common consent considered Fiocchi's management experience to have come to an end".
It did not give a reason for his departure after two years as CEO at the company, which is owned by Italy's De Benedetti family through its CIR holding.
The board has appointed Monica Mondardini, CIR chief executive, as Sogefi executive vice-chairwoman. She will select a new chief executive with whom to develop a strategy for the car parts manufacturer, Sogefi said.
The group reported a net loss for the first nine months of the year of 5.8 million euros ($7.4 million) from a net profit of 23.8 million euros in the same period the previous year.
Revenue was stable at around 1 billion euros, it said.
The company said despite weakness in South America, growth continued in Asia. Markets were also growing in North America, although at a slower rate than in the recent past, it added.
"Operating profitability in the last quarter is forecast to be in line with that of the third quarter as it will be influenced by the same factors in South America and Europe," it added.
For the July-September period Sogefi reported an operating profit before restructuring costs and other items of 20.2 million euros, down 29 percent year-on-year, while earnings before interest and taxes was 14.7 million euros, down 35 percent. (1 US dollar = 0.7853 euro) (Reporting by Agnieszka Flak; editing by James Mackenzie and Susan Thomas)
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