Australian conglomerate Wesfarmers, owner of supermarket chain Coles, has announced record half-year profits as a result of the acquisition of the food retailer in November.

Profit after tax rose to A$601m (US$555m) during the six months to 31 December, an increase of 53.3% on the year. Revenue rose from $4.7bn to $9.8bn for the half year.

The acquisition of Coles contributed $357m before interest and tax, Wesfarmers said.

MD Richard Goyder said the pre-Coles transaction businesses had also performed well in the six months. "The contribution from these operations increased 12.4% with five of the six divisions achieving higher earnings," he said.

"The very short period of ownership of the former Coles businesses and the Christmas trading impact are important factors to bear in mind when considering these results."

Goyder said the company's outlook was for continuing good results in most of the group's businesses with a very strong focus on bringing about "substantial change" in Coles.