Ahold, the Dutch retailer behind US chains Stop & Shop and Giant Food, has seen its sales growth slow during the second quarter of the year.

The company, which also runs the Albert Heijn chain in the Netherlands, said today (28 July) that second-quarter net sales had risen by 11.5% to EUR6.4bn during the three months to 12 July. On a constant-currency basis, net sales were up 3.9%.

In the first quarter of the year, Ahold booked a 15.2% rise in net sales - or 6.2% on a constant-currency basis.

Ahold said inflation "slowed considerably" during the second quarter, with shoppers focusing more on price and promotions.

In the US, Ahold's Stop & Shop/Giant-Landover division saw net sales rise by 2.8% to US$4.1bn. Identical-store sales climbed 1.7% at Stop & Shop, rose by 3.7% at Giant-Landover and 1.8% at Giant-Carlisle. Net sales from the giant-Carlisle business unit dipped 0.4% to US$1.1bn.

In Ahold's home market, net sales jumped 7.8% to EUR2.2bn. The retailer's Albert Heijn stores saw net sales climb 7.9% thanks to the conversion of stores formerly owned by fellow Dutch retailer Schuitema. Identical-store sales inched up 0.4%.

In the Czech Republic and Slovakia, Ahold's Albert/Hypernova unit saw net sales fall 6.8% to EUR383m due to a series of store closures. Identical-store sales fell 1.6%.

ICA, Ahold's venture in Scandinavia, saw net sales fall 8.3% to EUR2.2bn due to the strength of the euro. Stripping out foreign exchange, net sales were up 2.6%.