July 31, 2017 / 6:56 AM / in a year

UPDATE 1-Utility Veolia's H1 revenues lifted by strong U.S and Latam growth

* Confirms 2017-2019 financial targets

* H1 revenues up, but net profit falls (Adds CEO comments, Brexit comments, detail)

PARIS, July 31 (Reuters) - Strong international growth pushed Veolia’s first-half revenue up 4.3 percent to 12.34 billion euros ($14.5 billion) and the utility confirmed its 2017-19 earnings guidance, but net profit fell 19 percent reflecting lower capital gains.

International activities outside Europe recorded double-digit revenue growth, with 10.8 percent growth in the second quarter following 11.8 percent in the first.

North America revenues increased 16.7 percent, primarily due to the integration of sulfuric acid regeneration assets acquired from Chemours, but continued to post strong declines in industrial services activity as the low oil price led oil companies to delay maintenance and cleaning activities.

Latin America revenue grew 24 percent due to significant price increases and good volumes, while Asia revenue rose 19 percent, driven by growth of 37 percent in China, which saw strong performance in industrial water and good volumes in hazardous waste.

Europe - excluding France - saw 5.9 percent growth, but in its French home market revenue declined 0.9 percent as low inflation and strong competition from French peer Suez kept tariff increases in check. Low inflation also weighed on some of Veolia’s central European heating contracts.

Core earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) were up 0.3 percent to 1.65 billion euros, while current net income fell 8.6 percent to 295 million euros.

Net income fell to 204.6 million euros from a restated 252 million as net capital gains came in at just 4.5 million euros compared to 40.6 million euros in the first half of last year.

The company comfirmed its outlook for the resumption of revenue growth and stable to moderate EBITDA growth in 2017, continued revenue growth and sustained EBITDA growth in 2018 and EBITDA between 3.3 and 3.5 billion euros in 2019.

Veolia chief executive Antoine Frerot said the impact of a lower British pound had been compensated by the strength of other currencies, and that Veolia suffered no major effect from Brexit except from that currency impact.

$1 = 0.8524 euros Reporting by Geert De Clercq; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta

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