The Scandinavian retail group Axfood has reported a slight rise in its consolidated net sales for the first nine months, compared to the same period last year.

Sales for the period January-September 2007 in wholly owned stores decreased by 0.3%, with a 0.1% rise in like-for-like sales. This resulted in consolidated net sales totalling SEK21,536m, an increase of 0.5%. Net sales for Axfood's stores (wholly owned and franchise units) rose 0.9%, with a 0.4% rise in like-for-like sales.

In a statement, the company said that September consolidated net sales (excluding VAT) totalled SEK 2,289 m, a decrease of 2.2% compared with the same period a year ago. Net sales for stores in Sweden owned by the group decreased by 2.6% for the month of September, with a 2.6% decrease in like-for-like sales.

Hemköp's sales (wholly owned and franchise units) increased by 0.3 % during the month, with a 2.1% decrease in like-for-like sales. Accumulated sales increased by 0.7%, with no change in like-for-like sales compared to the same period 2006.

Net sales for Hemköp's wholly owned stores decreased 3.8% during the month, with a 4.1% decrease in like-for-like sales. Accumulated sales decreased by 3.8%, with a 1.2% decrease in like-for-like sales.

Willys' sales decreased by 2.1% during the month, with a 2.0% decrease in like-for-like sales. Accumulated sales increased by 1.0% with a 0.6% rise in like-for-like sales.