Ahold Shares Jump As Fourth-Quarter Sales Beat Estimates
Royal Ahold NV shares jumped the most in a month after the Dutch retailer’s quarterly sales beat estimates on the back of growth in the US and the Netherlands.
The stock advanced as much as 3.8 per cent to €19.06 in Amsterdam, the steepest intraday gain since December 15.
Fourth-quarter sales rose 21 per cent to €9.79 billion ($10.7 billion), compared with the €9.40 billion average estimate compiled by Bloomberg. The performance provides a boost for the Zaandam, Netherlands-based company as it seeks to complete the takeover of Belgium’s Delhaize Group, a deal it announced in June.
The Delhaize deal will give the company more than 4 per cent of grocery spending in the US, where Ahold’s chains include Stop & Shop. Cheaper prices and a better produce selection in the US are helping attract customers in the face of increased competition from retailers including Wal-Mart Stores Inc. Ahold in July agreed to acquire 25 A&P stores in New York for $146 million.
“It’s purely autonomous growth, though adding the A&P stores did also help,” Alan Vandenberghe, an analyst at KBC Securities, said by phone, adding that the figures support the business case for the acquisition of Delhaize.
Online retail, which represents about 5 per cent of revenue, rose 38 per cent to €484 million.
Ahold is scheduled to report fourth-quarter earnings on March 3.
News by Bloomberg, edited by ESM. To subscribe to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine, click here.