Dutch supermarket operator and wholesale retailer Laurus has posted a first-half profit, compared to a year earlier loss, beating analysts’ forecasts.

Laurus reported first-half net profit of €7m (US$7.6m), compared to a year earlier loss of €44m. Analysts polled by Reuters had been expecting, on average, a loss of €7.8m for the half-year.

French retailer Casino holds a 38.7% stake in Laurus, with an option to take a 51% controlling stake until the end of 2008.