Feb 16 (Reuters) - Truworths International Ltd:
* Unaudited group interim report for the 26 Weeks ended 25 December 2016
* Group retail sales for period increased by 21 pct to r10.2 billion
* Credit sales comprised 50 pct (2015: 60 pct) of group retail sales for period.
* Trading expenses increased 30 pct to r3.7 billion (2015: r2.8 billion)
* Excluding office, group’s gross margin was stable at 55.0 pct (2015: 55.3 pct).
* Headline earnings per share (heps) and diluted heps decreased 3 pct to 392.6 cents and 391.9 cents respectively
* An interim dividend of 270 cents per share has been declared (2015: 270 cents per share).
* Retail sales growth for second half of 2017 financial period will benefit from lower base recorded in second half of 2016 financial period
* Product inflation is also anticipated to reduce in second half to high single-digit levels.
* Truworths’ retail sales since interim period-end until 14 february remained unchanged over those for comparable period in 2016.
* Office recorded retail sales for period of £159 million (r2.9 billion) relative to comparable period’s £160 million
* Truworths - group sale of merchandise, which comprises group retail sales, together with wholesale and franchise grew 21 pct to r10.0 billion (2015: r8.3 billion)
* During period a net 7 stores were opened across all brands, resulting in an increase in trading space of 2 pct Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage: (Bengaluru Newsroom: +91 80 6749 1136)