Japanese convenience store retailer Lawson Inc has booked mixed annual results, with its bottom line hit by tax costs but its operating earnings rising 11%.

For the 12 months to the end of February, net profit slid 2% to JPY24.8bn (US$306.2m), Lawson said today (12 April).

It pointed to “JPY1.6bn negative impact from a reversal of deferred tax assets arising from decrease in corporate income tax rate”.

Operating profit, however, increased 11.2% year-on-year to JPY61.7bn, renewing a record high profit and resulting in the ninth consecutive year of growth for the retailer, it said.

Existing-store sales grew 5.4% year-on-year, boosted by an increased customer base as a result of the March 2011 earthquake. Customers, Lawson said, became “newly appreciative of nationwide convenience store chains”.

Net sales increased 8.5% to JPY478.96bn.

Going forward, Lawson said it intends to grow its convenience store operations by expanding its customer base for female and senior customers. It has also identified overseas operations as medium-term growth areas.

The retailer said it expect to increase its operating profit for the tenth straight year to JPY66bn, up 6.8% year-on-year, by strengthening its merchandise offerings. It also forecast a 5% increase in sales to JPY503bn.

Click here to view the full release.