HONG KONG, Aug 21 (Reuters) - Retail-focused conglomerate China Resources Enterprise Ltd (CRE) posted a 54.5 percent fall in first-half net profit on Wednesday, matching forecasts, as slower economic growth hit sales and rising costs pressured margins.
Government-backed CRE, which has interests ranging from making beverages to operating supermarket chains, said net profit fell to HK$1.02 billion ($131.54 million) for the January-to-June period, down from HK$2.24 billion in the same period a year earlier.
That compared to an average forecast of HK$1.1 billion by three analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.
Profit attributable to shareholders stood at HK$1.01 billion, excluding the effect of asset revaluation and the disposal of non-core assets, down from HK$1.13 billion a year ago, it said.
Turnover rose 12.3 percent to HK$71.9 billion from HK$63.96 billion yuan the year earlier period.
Earlier this month, CRE teamed up with British supermarket firm Tesco, the world’s No.3 retailer, for operating hypermarkets and supermarkets in China, a move that could bring their combined market share close to hypermarket leader Sun Art Retail Group Ltd.