AES (AES) reported Friday a stronger-than-expected 21% improvement in second-quarter profit, led by stronger volumes from its newest businesses overseas.

The Arlington, Va.-based global power company posted net income of $174 million, or 22 cents a share, compared with $144 million, or 18 cents a share, in the same quarter last year.

Excluding one-time items, the company earned 28 cents a share, just ahead of average analyst estimates polled by Thomson Reuters of 27 cents.

In a statement, AES chief executive Paul Hanrahan said per-share growth reflects improvements in its existing operations as well as income from new construction projects and volume growth from new businesses in Northern Ireland, Chile and Bulgaria.

Revenue for the three-month period was $4.5 billion, up from $3.9 billion a year ago.

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