SOURCE: Carrefour SA

March 06, 2008 02:00 ET

Carrefour SA announces Final Results

Paris, France--(Marketwire - March 6, 2008) -

                                   PRESS RELEASE
                                                       Levallois, 6th March 2008

                            2007 objectives achieved
                     Ready for a breakthrough year in 2008

                           Net sales: + 6.8% to EUR82bn
       Activity Contribution before IFRS 2 restatement*: +3.3% to EUR3,359m
        Activity Contribution after IFRS 2 restatement* +3.4% to EUR3,291m
           Net income from recurring operations, Group share: + 0.7%
                   Dividend: fixed at 1.08 euros per share**

The Supervisory Board of Carrefour, which met on the 5th of March 2008, has
examined the consolidated accounts for the year 2007 drawn up by the Management
Board on 28 February 2008.

The Management Board has decided to propose to the Annual General Meeting a
dividend of EUR1.08 per share for the year 2007, representing a stable pay-out
ratio of 40% compared to 2006. This dividend will be paid on the 23rd of April

                                       Consolidated profit and loss account
(EURm)                                                                     2007           2006         Growth

Net sales                                                                 82,148         76,887         +6.8%
Activity Contribution bef. Dep. and Amortisation (ACDA)                    5,014         4,740          +5.8%
Activity Contribution before IFRS 2 reclassification*                      3,359         3,252          +3.3%
Activity Contribution after IFRS 2 reclassification*                       3,291         3,183          +3.4%
Net income from recurring operations Group Share                           1,868         1,856          +0.7%
Net income Group Share                                                     2,299         2,269          +1.4%

* Activity Contribution and ACDA have been restated to take into account the
evolution of the IFRS 2 treatment of stock options which will now be treated as
personnel costs and which before were treated as non-recurring items.

** Subject to approval by the Annual General Meeting.

O    Full year results are in line with our targets

We achieved our objectives in 2007 in a fierce competitive environment in Europe
and against the backdrop of deflation in France in the first three quarters of
the year.

  - Sales ex VAT increased 6.8% at current exchange rates and by 7.0% on
    constant exchange rates, representing the third consecutive year of
    accelerating rates of sales growth
  - Activity Contribution increased 3.4%

We have reinforced the main elements of group strategy, focusing on customer
satisfaction and profitable growth:

  - Our growth markets confirmed their role as a main engine for growth within
    the group:
     o    Our markets outside France, Spain, Italy et Belgium accounted for more
          than 25% of group sales in 2007 and 23% of Activity Contribution 
          compared to 21% and 12% respectively in 2004
     o    At the same time, ROCE has increased significantly in these markets,
          from 6.4% in 2004 to 14.7% in 2007

  - In addition to our commitment to competitive prices, we continue to
    develop the consumer offer, mainly through the development of new commercial
    models which respond better to the expectations of our customers, and which
    make the Carrefour brand work harder

  - The roll out of our multi format, single brand, strategy internationally
    continues to be successful. We have been testing this strategy in France
    since the Second Half 2007 in 13 hypermarkets and supermarkets. The first
    results have been encouraging
O    Sales growth reflects accelerating trends in our growth markets

All regions contributed to sales growth.

                                         Regional breakdown of Net Sales
(EURm)                                                                  2007            2006           Growth

France                                                                 37,621          37,212          + 1.1%
Europe (ex France)                                                     30,837          28,835          + 6.9%
Latin America                                                          8,211            5,929          + 38.5%
Asia                                                                   5,480            4,911          + 11.6%

Total Group                                                            82,148          76,887          + 6.8%

Sales in France increased 1.1%. Our hypermarkets and supermarkets registered an
increase in like for like sales thanks to a strong increase in volumes and
despite food price deflation over the first nine months of the year.

Our international sales increased by 9.4%, notably in Latin American and Asia
where sales grew on constant exchange rates by 38% and 17.3% respectively.

Our growth markets outside France, Spain, Belgium, and Italy, recorded growth of
17.5%. Tactical acquisitions contributed sales growth of 2.4%.

O    Activity Contribution increased 3.4%

In a tough competitive environment, we have been able to maintain our commercial
margin broadly at the same level as in 2006. This reflects an improvement in our
non-food margin mix and an improvement in logistics costs offset by the impact
of our commitment to local price leadership.

In 2007 operating costs were again well controlled, even as we have allocated
more resources to the shop floor.

Activity Contribution before depreciation and amortization increased 5.8%, a
rate of growth similar to that of sales.

                                               Activity Contribution
(EURm)                                                                       2007          2006         Growth

Net sales                                                                   82,148        76,887         +6.8%
Commercial income                                                           18,686        17,518         +6.7%
Commercial margin                                                            22.7%         22.8%
SG&A                                                                        13,673        12,778         +7.0%
Activity Contribution, before depreciation and amortization                  5,014         4,740         +5.8%
Depreciation and amortization                                                1,722         1,557        +10.6%

Activity Contribution                                                        3,291         3,183         +3.4%

As in 2006, the acceleration of our expansion programme over the last three
years, and the roll out of new concepts, has led to an increase in asset costs
(rents and depreciation) of 10.9%.

As a result, Activity Contribution before IFRS 2 reclassification increased by
3.3%, to EUR3,359m and by 3.4%, after IFRS 2 reclassification, to EUR3,291m.

                                   Breakdown of Activity Contribution by region
(EURm)                                                                       2007          2006         Growth

France                                                                       1,556         1,649        - 5.7%
Europe (ex France)                                                           1,216         1,201        + 1.2%
Latin America                                                                 301           161         + 86.5%
Asia                                                                          218           171         + 27.6%

Total Group                                                                  3,291         3,183        + 3.4%

O    Net income group share increased 0.7%

Net income group share, before discontinued activities, grew 0.7%. In 2007, the
divestment of insufficiently profitable activities resulted in a exceptional
gain of EUR431m versus EUR413 m in 2006, mainly a result of the sale of our
activities in Switzerland and our hypermarkets in Portugal.

As a result, Net income group share increased 1.4% to EUR2,299m.

                                              Profit and loss account
(EURm)                                                                  2007            2006            Growth

Activity Contribution                                                  3,291            3,183           + 3.4%

Non recurring elements                                                   47              86               Na
EBIT                                                                   3,338            3,269           + 2.1%
Financial costs                                                        (526)            (474)          + 11.1%
Income tax                                                             (807)            (811)           - 0.5%
Tax rate                                                               28.7%            29.0%
Minority interest                                                      (180)            (165)           + 8.8%
Associates                                                               43              37            + 17.4%

Net income from rec. Ops Group Share                                   1,868            1,856           + 0.7%

Discontinued activities                                                 431              413

Net income group share                                                 2,299            2,268           + 1.4%

As expected, our financial costs were up EUR52m, or +11.1%, mainly as a result of
rising interest rates and the cost of our recent acquisitions - mainly Atacadao
and Ahold Polska - which involved cash out of EUR1.5bn in the period. The average
interest rate over the year was 4.6% versus 4.3% in 2006.

The tax charge, as expected, was more or less at the same level as at the end of
2006, at 28.7% versus 29.0%. Our balance sheet and financial ratios remained
solid, despite the acquisitions undertaken in the year.

Cash flow increased by 9.3%, to EUR3.9bn. Capital expenditures were EUR3.1bn versus
EUR3.3bn in 2006. Thus, free cash flow was positive by EUR691m, a significant
increase on the EUR222m achieved in 2006.

O    2008: a breakthrough year

In 2008 we are ready for a breakthrough year during which faster sales growth
will translate into even faster profits growth together with a corresponding
increase in ROCE.

We are expecting sales growth of 6 and 8% (excluding acquisitions) and an
increase in Activity Contribution faster than sales. This growth, together with
better capital allocation, should lead to Operating Free Cash Flow of EUR1.5bn and
an increase in group ROCE.

We have a number of key iniatives which will help us to achieve these objectives
without compromising our commitment to local price leadership,.
-    Rolling out our new commercial models

     o    After encouraging results in 2007, we are progressively converting our
          hypermarkets in France as well as in other major European markets

-    Reducing supply chain and other operating costs
     o    Programmes already in place should allow us to reduce logistics costs
          by around 0.10% as a percentage of sales.
     o    At the same time, we expect to be able to reduce operating costs by a
          further 0.10%.

-    Allocating capital more efficiently

     o    We are now opening regularly around 1.2 million new m(2) per annum,
          mainly in our growth markets

Over and above this, we have two further opportunities to create value:
-    Brand convergence in France

     o    After an encouraging start, a decision on the roll out will be taken 
          in the Second Quarter 2008.

-    Making property a second metier  in Carrefour
     o    We regard property as a strategic asset at the heart of our customer
          relationships and the creation of value
     o    We are making property a new focus of expertise for the group
     o    We believe that a private placement of shares in Carrefour property
          should be possible in Q4 for a value of between EUR1 and EUR1.5bn
     o    We are still targeting to go public when market conditions are met. We
          expect, in due course, the total placement of Carrefour Property to be 
          in the region of EUR3bn.

The operating free cash flow which we expect to generate this year of EUR1.5bn
will be used to finance tactical acquisitions.

Cash-in from one-off events such as divestments and property (together around
EUR4.5bn) will be used, on the other hand, to improve returns to shareholders in
the period 2008 to 2010.

                            Annual General Meeting:

 The Ordinary and Extraordinary Annual General Meeting will be held on 15 April
 2008 at 9.30 am at the Carrousel du Louvre, 99 rue de Rivoli in Paris (75001)

                      Publication of Q1 2008: 13 May 2008

                      This information is provided by RNS
            The company news service from the London Stock Exchange