French power group Alstom saw orders rise but sales and profits fall in the six months from 1 April 1 to 30 September.

While orders hit €10.2bn ($14bn), an increase of 45 per cent on the same period in 2010, sales sunk 10 per cent to €9.4bn while net income was €363m from €401m last year.

Alstom chairman Patrick Kron predicted the second half of the financial year would see a reversal, characterised “by an improved volume of sales, a higher operating margin, as well as a positive free cash flow”.

Meanwhile, Alstom today announced it will build two factories to build wind turbine components, in Cherbourg and Saint-Nazaire.

The company said the facilities would be its first dedicated offshore wind energy manufacturing centres.

Generators would be built in Saint-Nazaire while blades would be constructed at Cherbourg.

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