Swiss chocolate maker Lindt & Spruengli has reported a 20% rise in 2003 net income, boosted by the introduction of new products.

The company posted net income of CHF122.4m (US$94.5m), beating analysts' expectations of around CHF115m.

Lindt & Spruengli said new products, including its Golden Bunny, helped offset a fall in tourism, which reduced sales of luxury goods worldwide, reported Reuters.

Operating earnings before interest and taxes rose 10.5% to CHF118.7m, which was in line with expectations.

CEO Ernst Tanner said the company has had a strong start to the year and expects to report good results for 2004.