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Husqvarna's quarterly operating profit misses forecasts, cuts jobs

FILE PHOTO: A Husqvarna robotic lawn mower is placed in its docking station in the Humlegarden park in Stockholm

By Marie Mannes

(Reuters) -Garden equipment and tools maker Husqvarna on Friday reported third-quarter operating profit well below market expectations, and said it would restructure its business and cut 1,000 jobs.

The Swedish company reported a 40% drop in its quarterly operating profit to 555 million Swedish crowns ($49.1 million), down from 926 million crowns a year earlier and below the 644.2 million crowns expected by analysts in a Refinitiv poll.

Shares in Husqvarna, already down 55% this year as of Thursday's market close, fell 5% in early Friday trade.

Husqvarna has struggled in the past quarters to fully meet demand as component shortages as well as other supply chain disturbances continued to hit its production.

"Price increases compensated for higher raw material and logistics costs. However, lower volumes and higher costs related to supply chain disturbances had a negative impact," Husqvarna said.

The Swedish group, whose rivals include Black & Decker and Honda Motor, raised prices in April as costs including raw materials, energy and transportation continued to squeeze the margins.

The world's biggest maker of gardening power tools said it would reduce its 14,000 workforce by around a thousand people as it started to cut back its offering of petrol-powered consumer products.

This would give the company savings of around 800 million crowns annually from 2025, around half of which will be devoted to increasing investment in more sustainable business lines like robotic mowers and battery-powered tools.

Husqvarna said the "vast majority" of the job cuts were related to the shift from petrol to battery-powered tools.

($1 = 11.3022 Swedish crowns)