mance, according to company officials, with sales growth of two percent. However, including currencies and divestments, sales actually fell five percent.
“In difficult market conditions, our worldwide number one coatings business showed a solid performance,” said Akzo Nobel’s CFO Fritz Fröhlich. “Restructuring is contributing clearly and costs are well under control. Return on sales margins in the quarter were on a par with last year’s third quarter. Workforce decreased more than 1,000 employees on a net basis, despite continuous growth in the emerging markets. The marine and protective coatings, powder coatings and industrial activities were particularly strong. Decorative coatings is feeling the pressure from weak business conditions in Europe.”