X5 Retail Group today (6 March) reiterated its sales outlook for 2009, saying it expects to grow revenues by more than 25% in spite of the economic downturn that has sapped Russian consumer confidence.

During the fiscal year, Russia's largest food retailer by sales said that it intends to invest "no more than" RUB14bn (US$390m) in capital expenditure.

However, the company added that it is committed to adjusting its expansion plans in response to the turmoil currently affecting the global financial markets.

X5 said that it expects fiscal 2008 core profit will exceed its target, helped by strong sales growth and cost control.

"X5 expects to report full year 2008 pro-forma EBITDA margin, a key measure of profitability, of approximately 9%, beating the company's 8.4-8.6% target for the year," the company said.

However, the group also revealed that a non-cash goodwill impairment charge of US$2-2.5bn will be recorded in its fourth-quarter, the result of the increased cost of borrowing and the decline witnessed in the retailer's share value.

"The charge reflects change in the company's stock price, but does not impact the strategic value of X5's assets and is not indicative of the company's ability to generate cash flow. The write-down of goodwill also has no impact on bank credit arrangements or bonds," X5 said.