UK's B&M expects annual profit ahead of estimates on early decision to import stock

Jan 6 (Reuters) - UK's B&M European Value Retail SA (BMEB.L) on Thursday forecast annual profit ahead of estimates, following the discount retailer's decision to take delivery of imported stock earlier than usual.

The country's retailers are grappling with global supply chain bottlenecks, domestic labour shortages and stricter restrictions during the holidays to tackle a surge in COVID-19 infections due to the Omicron variant.

"Our decision to take receipt of imported Christmas stock early in the season meant we were able to provide customers with great products at great prices," Chief Executive Officer Simon Arora said.

B&M, which sells everything from food to gardening and DIY products, said it now expects group adjusted core earnings for the 12 months ending March between 605 million pounds ($817.8 million) and 625 million pounds, compared with a company-compiled estimate of 578 million pounds.

The company recorded third-quarter group revenue growth of 0.1% on a constant currency basis compared with last year.

($1 = 0.7398 pounds)

Reporting by Aby Jose Koilparambil in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta

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