SOURCE: Ahold NV

May 09, 2008 00:51 ET

Ahold Trading Statement Q1 2008

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS--(Marketwire - May 9, 2008) -


Amsterdam, the Netherlands - Ahold today announced consolidated net sales of EUR 7.5 billion for the first quarter ending April 20, 2008. Compared to the first quarter of 2007, net sales decreased by 1.3% but increased by 6.8% at constant exchange rates.

In Europe, market conditions remained favorable. In the United States, the Value Improvement Program at Stop & Shop and Giant-Landover is on track. Price investments related to the roll-out of the program continue to impact margins and sales, with improvements expected later in the year. We remain vigilant about the economic environment and rising food prices.

Sales performance

Stop & Shop / Giant-Landover

  * Net sales increased 1.3% to $5.1 billion.
  * Net sales included $56 million of sales to Tops. Prior to its
    disposal, such sales were recorded as inter-company sales.
  * Identical sales increased 1.2% at Stop & Shop (0.2% excluding
    gasoline net sales) and decreased 1.5% at Giant-Landover (1.6%
    excluding gasoline net sales), impacted by lower pharmacy sales.
  * Comparable sales increased 1.6% at Stop & Shop and decreased 1.2%
    at Giant-Landover.

Giant-Carlisle

  * Net sales increased 9.2% to $1.4 billion.
  * Identical sales increased 5.7% (3.7% excluding gasoline net
    sales).
  * Comparable sales increased 6.7%.

Albert Heijn

  * Net sales increased 13.5% to EUR 2.7 billion.
  * Net sales at Albert Heijn supermarkets increased 13.6% to EUR 2.5
    billion.
  * Identical sales at Albert Heijn supermarkets increased 11.3%.

Albert / Hypernova (Czech Republic and Slovakia)

  * Net sales increased 18.0% to EUR 512 million (7.9% at constant
    exchange rates).
  * Identical sales increased 7.8%.

Unconsolidated joint venture - ICA

  * Net sales increased 10.8% to EUR 2.3 billion (11.7% at constant
    exchange rates).

Schuitema

  * Schuitema has been classified as a discontinued operation as of
    the first quarter of 2008.


Net sales per segment


                                         Q1 2008   Q1 2007   % Change
(in millions)
All segments (in euros)

Stop & Shop / Giant-Landover             3,407     3,854     (11.6%)
Giant-Carlisle                           936       983       (4.8%)
Ahold USA                                4,343     4,837     (10.2%)

Albert Heijn                             2,683     2,363     13.5%
Albert / Hypernova                       512       434       18.0%
Ahold Europe                             3,195     2,797     14.2%

Ahold Group                              7,538     7,634     (1.3%)

Unconsolidated joint venture - ICA
                                         2,266     2,045     10.8%
Average U.S. dollar exchange rate
(EUR per USD)                            0.6618    0.7591    (12.8%)


U.S. segments (in U.S. dollars)

Stop & Shop / Giant-Landover             5,146     5,078     1.3%
Giant-Carlisle                           1,414     1,295     9.2%

On April 23, 2008, Ahold announced that it had reached agreement on the sale of its 73.2% interest in Schuitema N.V. to private equity firm CVC Capital Partners. Schuitema has been classified as a discontinued operation as of the first quarter of 2008. Ahold's unconsolidated joint venture JMR continues to be classified as a discontinued operation.


Ahold Press Office: +31 (0)20 509 5291


Notes

The net sales figures presented in this trading statement are preliminary and unaudited.

Definitions

  * Identical sales: net sales from exactly the same stores in local
    currency for the comparable period.
  * Comparable sales: identical sales plus net sales from replacement
    stores in local currency.
  * Constant exchange rates: excludes the impact of using different
    currency exchange rates to translate the financial information of
    certain of Ahold's subsidiaries or joint ventures to euros. For
    comparison purposes, the financial information of the previous
    year or quarter is adjusted using the average currency exchange
    rates for the current year or quarter in order to understand this
    currency impact.

Non-GAAP financial measures

This trading statement includes the following non-GAAP financial measures:

  * Net sales, at constant exchange rates. Net sales, at constant
    exchange rates, exclude the impact of using different currency
    exchange rates to translate the financial information of certain
    Ahold subsidiaries or joint ventures to euros. Ahold's management
    believes this measure provides a better insight into the
    operating performance of Ahold's foreign subsidiaries or joint
    ventures.

  * Identical sales, excluding gasoline net sales. Because gasoline
    prices have experienced greater volatility than food prices,
    Ahold's management believes that by excluding gasoline net sales,
    this measure provides a better insight into the effect of
    gasoline net sales on Ahold's identical sales.

Ahold's financial year

  * Ahold's reporting calendar is based on 13 periods of four weeks.
    The quarters in 2008 are as follows:

         First Quarter              December 31, 2007 through April
                                    20, 2008
         Second Quarter             April 21 through July 13, 2008
         Third Quarter              July 14 through October 5, 2008
         Fourth Quarter             October 6 through December 28,
                                    2008


Cautionary notice

This press release includes forward-looking statements, which do not refer to historical facts but refer to expectations based on management's current views and assumptions and involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, performance or events to differ materially from those included in such statements. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements as to the expected impact of the Value Improvement Program on Stop & Shop's and Giant-Landover's margins and sales, the completion of the sale of Ahold's 73.2% interest in Schuitema and Ahold's intention to divest its stake in JMR. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from future results expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Many of these risks and uncertainties relate to factors that are beyond Ahold's ability to control or estimate precisely, such as the effect of general economic or political conditions, rising food prices, fluctuations in exchange rates or interest rates, increases or changes in competition, Ahold's ability to implement and complete successfully its plans and strategies, the benefits from and resources generated by Ahold's plans and strategies being less than or different from those anticipated, changes in Ahold's liquidity needs, the actions of competitors and third parties and other factors discussed in Ahold's public filings. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Koninklijke Ahold N.V., which is Ahold's statutory name, does not assume any obligation to update any public information or forward-looking statements in this release to reflect subsequent events or circumstances, except as may be required by securities law.


Please open the link below for the full version of the Trading Statement Q1 2008:


http://hugin.info/130711/R/1217764/255001.pdf



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