Asahi Glass Co. said Wednesday it chalked up record half-year sales and profits in the January-June period.

In its consolidated results for the first half of the current business year, Asahi Glass booked a net profit of 59.46 billion yen on sales of 715.11 billion yen. It said the result was due in part to an active expansion of operations in the glass-board business for thin-film transistor liquid-crystal displays and plasma-display panels.

Comparable figures from the year before are unavailable because the company changed its book-closing date to Dec. 31 from March 31.

Compared with the April-September first half of the 2003 business year, the profit in the just-ended six-month period represents an increase of 101.9 percent, while sales were up 8.1 percent.

Asahi Glass also posted 65.67 billion yen in operating profit, up 81.6 percent, and 64.65 billion yen in pretax profit, up 94.4 percent, both of which were fresh six-month highs.

In addition to the expanded glass-board business, the company attributed the strong results to cost reductions and price hikes.

For the entire business year to Dec. 31, Asahi Glass forecasts a net profit of 73 billion yen and a pretax profit of 122 billion yen on sales of 1.45 trillion yen.

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