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Dutch grocery retailer Sligro Food Group has reported an increase in first-half net profit despite rising purchasing prices and “fierce competition”.

The company said today (21 July) that for the first six months of the year, net profit rose 20.3% to reach EUR34m (US$48.9m). Sales rose 6.2% over the period to reach EUR1.2bn, while like-for-like sales were up 3.3%.

The company said that its food retail division posted like-for-like sales growth of 5.5%, Sligro said that growth had outpaced the market, which grew by 2.5% over the half.

Sligro said the economic climate remains uncertain but it expects consumer spending to “remain steady”. It also expects heavy price competition to continue in 2011.

Nonetheless, Sligro plans to start building on the growth provided from the Sanders supermarkets it acquired last year. “After six months spent on store conversion and integration, we can now concentrate fully on sales and further optimisation,” it said.

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By GlobalData