Germany’s largest retailer Metro Group posted an increase in operating profit of around 14% for the first quarter of 2008 as growth in Eastern Europe offset slowing sales at home.
The group’s EBIT rose to EUR152m (US$237m) from EUR134m a year earlier, while group sales saw an increase of 7.3% to EUR15.6bn.
Eckhard Cordes CEO said that Eastern European wholesale sales were “very satisfactory” and that the Real chain is refurbishing stores in a bid to stem losses.
Internationally, Metro sales increased in the first quarter by 12.1% to EUR9.3bn and in Western Europe sales rose 4.8% to EUR4.8bn.
Metro reported that it forecast sales growth of more than 6% this year with the opening of 40 Cash & Carry stores, 70 Media Market and Saturn sites and 15 Real branches.