Royal DSM saw its sales rise in the first quarter of 2013, but experienced a decline in profits, reported the Dutch multinational life sciences and materials sciences company on Thursday. The EBITDA in the first quarter amounted to 311 million euros (411 million U.S. dollars), 2 percent more than last year (306 million euros). Sales rose by 4 percent to 2.4 billion euros. The net profit of DSM slumped by 18 percent to 119 million euros, while it was 145 million last year. This decrease was mainly due to higher depreciation and financing costs. The life sciences department delivered growth once again, according to DSM, driven by the nutrition part, while materials sciences also performed well, except for caprolactam. The latter raw material for nylon had another bad quarter with a negative impact on EBITDA of 65 million euros. DSM maintains the previously expressed expectations for 2013. The company anticipates a strong growth of EBITDA this year, moving towards 1.4 billion euros. \"In a challenging economic environment, I\'m pleased to report a good start to the year with a robust performance,\" commented CEO Feike Sijbesma in a press release. \"Nutrition, which accounts for about 70 percent of group EBITDA, has proved the resilience and quality of its broad offering across the value chain, delivering another quarterly improvement in profitability, together with healthy margins.\" \"Where the last two years were characterized by acquisitions, in 2013 we will fully focus on the operational performance and the integration of acquisitions,\" the CEO added. \"With special attention to capturing synergies whilst also ensuring the successful execution of our group-wide profit improvement initiatives.\"