Slovenian retailer Mercator has confirmed plans to invest in expanding in Bulgaria, while also increasing returns to investors.

Mercator intends to open two outlets in Bulgaria this year, with a further investment to support continued expansion in the market, a spokesperson confirmed. The company is planning further store openings over the next three years.

"Our strategy is to further expand in this region and this will be supported through investment," a spokesperson said.

In a statement released today (17 June), the company also said that it would raise its dividend for fiscal 2008 to EUR4.5 (US$6.25) per share, up from the EUR4.25 last year.

In February, Mercator posted a fall in full-year income despite a jump in revenue. The company posted net profit of EUR40.7m (US$51.6m) compared to EUR43.8m in 2007. Revenue reached EUR2.71bn, against EUR2.45bn a year earlier.