By Pietro Lombardi
ENI SpA (ENI.MI) said Friday that net profit rose more than six-fold in the fourth quarter, supported by an increase in the price of crude and growing sales across its divisions.
The company's fourth-quarter net profit was 2.10 billion euros ($2.62 billion), compared with EUR340 million in the same period last year.
Revenue rose 11% to EUR17.55 billion on the back of higher net sales across the group's businesses. Sales from exploration and production rose 15% to EUR5.57 billion, while sales at the gas and power businesses climbed 13% to EUR13.54 billion.
Eni said its oil-and-gas production increased 1.9% in the quarter, as Brent crude oil--the international benchmark--averaged $61.39, about 24% up compared with the year-earlier period.
The company said it will pay a dividend of EUR0.80 a share, unchanged from 2016.
Eni will release its 2018-2021 targets in March, it said. The Italian multinational said it expects 2018 capital expenditure to stand at about EUR8 billion.