SOURCE: Delhaize Group

November 08, 2007 02:00 ET

Delhaize Group Continues Strong Revenue Growth in Third Quarter

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM--(Marketwire - November 8, 2007) -

Third Quarter 2007 Results

*            Revenue growth of 4.2% at identical exchange rates
*            Strong U.S. comparable store sales growth of 4.6%, the
  highest since 2000
*            Operating profit decreases 6.0% at actual exchange rates
  and grows 0.5% at identical
  exchange rates
*            Group share in net profit jumps 128.2% at actual
  exchange rates

Guidance 2007 Results
*            Increase of U.S. comparable store sales guidance to 3.5%
  to 4.0% range (2.5% to 3.5% previously)
*            Confirmation of Group revenue and profit guidance

CEO Comments

"In the third quarter of 2007, Delhaize Group realized a robust revenue performance and maintained its strong operating margins despite comparing to last year's exceptionally strong quarter", said Pierre-Olivier Beckers, President and Chief Executive Officer of Delhaize Group.

"We are particularly happy with the excellent performance of our operations in the U.S. We realized 4.6% U.S. comparable store sales growth, the highest since 2000 and continued to grow our U.S. operating margins. Revenue growth at both Food Lion and Hannaford stayed strong, particularly through increasing customer traffic. Sweetbay realized its best comparable store sales growth since the launch of the conversion project, showing encouraging signs in the rebranding of our Florida business."

"In Belgium, intense competition, exceptionally bad summer weather and the sale of our beauty and body care business Di impacted our sales growth, although we still realized positive sales growth against the strongest quarter of 2006. We are positioning ourselves for better sales dynamics by investing significantly in our price position despite the temporary negative margin impact. Our Greek, Romanian and Indonesian operations continued their positive growth in revenues and profits."


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