Portugal and Poland-focused retailer Jeronimo Martins has seen strong growth at its Biedronka chain lift the group to a double-digit sales rise for 2012.

For the 12 months to the end of December, Jeronimo Martins reported net sales up by 10.5% on 2011, to EUR10.9bn (US$14.5bn). Sales at its Biedronka stores rose by 16% to EUR6.7bn, driven by 263 new store openings and also like-for-like growth of 6.4%.

Refurbishing existing stores as part of the firm’s ‘fresh focus’ initiative helped Bierdronka to outperform the Polish food retail market, which slowed over the year “as a result of a more cautious consumer behaviour and a reduction in disposable income”, the group said.

Elsewhere in the Jeronimo Martins business, Pingo Doce saw sales rise by 2.4% in a tough Portugal market that witnessed “sharp falls in consumption”, the group said.

There was a more mixed performance from Recheio, which reported like-for-like sales down in the fourth quarter, reflecting the difficult economic climate.