Australian chain Woolworths, which accounts for about 40 percent of New Zealand's supermarket sales, increased first-half revenue 2.3 percent on this side of the Tasman, even as trading conditions remain tough and consumer price growth was non-existent.
The group's New Zealand supermarkets increased sales to $2.94 billion in the 27 weeks ended December 30 from $2.88 billion a year earlier, the ASX-listed company says in a statement.
Total group sales rose 3.2 percent to $A30.68 billion, including a $A642 million contribution from its Dick Smith Electronics stores, which it sold in the period.
"In a market characterised by low growth and even lower inflation, retail trading conditions have become increasingly challenging," says David Chambers, managing director of local supermarket unit Progressive Enterprises.
"Our strong brand, new store formats and continually improving offers have enabled us to continue to increase our market share throughout the half."
Woolworths New Zealand, the local holding company, boosted annual profit 29 percent to $128.9 million in the 2012 financial year on a 3.5 percent increase in sales, according to documents lodged with the Companies Office.
Those earnings gains have come in a period when inflation is easing, and government figures this month showed the consumers' price index fell 0.2 percent in the December quarter.
The Countdown Supermarkets food price index showed inflation of just 0.1 percent in the six-month period, with second-quarter deflation in dairy products.
Woolworths says it passed on lower costs of milk, butter and cheese to its customers, and held more frequent promotions.
Shares in the Australian group fell 1 percent to $A31.35 on the ASX today.
This article is tagged with the following keywords. Find out more about MyNBR Tags
- Spark partners with Netflix to boost flagging broadband share
- Mid-term report card: How's the reporting season going?
- Carry on: Xiamen for Auckland, Cathay for Christchurch, Virgin for HK and more
- Mt Albert by-election: all over bar the doubting
- What readers think of ComCom's Sky Vodafone merger decision
Most listened to
- Hobson Wealth's James Grigor gives an earnings season update
- Craigs' Mark Lister on why the US share market is rallying so hard
- Rob Hosking'a by-election takewayas, 'Ardern's win is no reason to elevate her to deputy leadership'
- Competition lawyer Andy Matthews on whether ComCom is getting tougher
- Intuit's Brad Smith on QuickBooks Online's accelerating growth