US grocery distributor and retailer Supervalu has posted a 5.8% rise in quarterly profit, boosted by new customers following the bankruptcy of rival Fleming.

The Minneapolis-based company reported net income of US$62.2m, or 46 cents a share, for the second quarter to 6 September, compared to $58.8m, or 44 cents a share, a year earlier.

However, Supervalu also warned that rising employee benefit costs, slower sales recovery and the cost of overhauling more than 50 stores would impact its earnings growth over the rest of the year, reported Reuters.

The company reported a 6.0% rise in total second-quarter sales to $4.59bn, while its food distribution sales rose 5.2% to $2.21bn.

Supervalu, which operates more than 1,400 supermarkets, forecast full-year earnings per share of between $2.05 and $2.12.

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