Brazilian retailer Companhia Brasileira de Distribuicao (CBD) posted a 41.6% increase in full-year net profit today (3 March) boosted by strong sales and reduced operating costs.

Net profit for the period reached BRL298.6m (US$121.9m) from BRL210.9m in 2007.

Net profit for the fourth quarter, however, dropped 9.2% from BRL102.3m in the previous year.

EBITDA reached BRL398.1m in the quarter, 22.5% up year-on-year, accompanied by a margin of 7.7%. As a result, the annual EBITDA margin came to 7.5%, in line with the company's 2008 guidance.

Net sales for the year were up 21% to reach BRL18.03bn on the previous year.

"Despite the global economic crisis, we are beginning 2009 in a stronger position and much better prepared to achieve solid growth, both in terms of sales and results," the company said in its trading statement.

"We are extremely confident regarding the future. We believe the markets will recover and that the resulting business will be built on more solid and realistic bases. Our objective is to continue growing, always seeking a balance between sales and profitability."