Swiss chocolate maker Lindt & Sprüngli is in line for a record year after a robust first-half, according to a leading industry analyst.

Lindt saw profits more than double to CHF31.7m (US$26.3m) during the six months to the end of June, on the back of a 13.5% rise in sales to CHF1.1bn.

Lindt claimed an “excellent” start to the year and James Amoroso, industry analyst at Swiss broker Helvea, agreed the company’s performance had surpassed his expectations.

Amoroso said Lindt had performed strongly in most markets, particularly France and the US; in the latter market, sales from Lindt’s retail outlets soared by over 40%.

“The company was cautious on its second half but we’re going to see a record result in terms of organic growth, unless something goes very wrong,” Amoroso told just-food today (21 August). “But, Lindt doesn’t seem to be making too many mistakes.”

In 2006, Lindt saw operating profit rise 19.4% to CHF297m; revenues rose 15% to CHF2.6bn.

On the acquisition front, Lindt has said it would be interested in looking at the possibility of buying Godiva, the upmarket chocolate business likely to be sold by US group Campbell Soup Co.

However, Amoroso reaffirmed his belief that Lindt would be unlikely to be interested in buying the business. Earlier this month, industry analysts tipped Nestlé as the likely front-runner for Godiva, a premium chocolate business with annual sales of around US$500m.