© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The Ahold Delhaize emblem is seen on the firm’s headquarters in Zaandam, Netherlands August 23, 2018. REUTERS/Eva Plevier/File Picture
(Reuters) -Grocery store group Ahold Delhaize expects meals inflation in Europe to gradual within the second half of this yr, CEO Frans Muller mentioned on Wednesday after the retailer beat expectations for its first quarter because of robust U.S. gross sales.
Muller mentioned he noticed meals inflation slowing within the second half, with costs for sunflower oil and eggs prone to fall again barely.
Ahold, which operates Cease & Store, Big, Meals Lion and Hannaford within the U.S. and Albert Heijn within the Netherlands, posted quarterly gross sales of 21.62 billion euros ($23.80 billion) to beat a 21.5 billion euro consensus from analyst forecasts compiled by the corporate.
The retailer, which makes greater than half its revenues within the U.S., noticed its underlying working margin rise to 4.8% within the U.S. whereas in Europe it fell to 2.8%, hit by larger power prices and a strike at Delhaize Belgium. Ahold additionally has supermarkets in Czech Republic, Greece, Portugal, Romania, and Serbia, in addition to Indonesia.
On-line gross sales within the U.S. jumped by 11.9% in comparison with a yr in the past, serving to general on-line gross sales develop by 5.9%. Ahold mentioned its loyalty applications had been serving to to attract customers with personalised reductions.
Quarterly working revenue was 822 million euros, in keeping with expectations of 823 million euros.
($1 = 0.9084 euros)