PARIS Aug 29 Carrefour, the world's
second-largest retailer, reported a 4.9 percent rise in
first-half recurring operating profit as a sharp improvement in
the profitability of its core French business offset weakness in
Spain and Italy, and in Asia.
Chief Financial Officer Pierre-Jean Sivignon told reporters
he was sticking with comments he made in July that he was
comfortable with the market consensus for 2013 earnings before
interest and taxes of around 2.2 billion euros ($2.93 billion),
provided there is no big swing in Latin American currencies.
Europe's largest retailer said on Thursday that first-half
recurring operating profit reached 766 million euros, slightly
below the average forecast of 771 million in a Reuters poll of
The robust performance in France, which contributes more
than 40 percent of group sales, should further reassure
investors that Chief Executive Georges Plassat's revival plan
for Carrefour is starting to bear fruit despite a tough economic
The plan entails offering shoppers lower prices and simpler
products, renovating aging stores and giving store managers more
autonomy after years of central planning.
($1 = 0.7496 euros)
(Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by James Regan)