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BERLIN, Jan 10 (Reuters) - German retailer Metro, which plans to split into two companies by mid-2017, reported that sales slipped 0.6 percent in the critical Christmas quarter, due to weakness at its Real hypermarkets and sluggish performance in consumer electronics.
Sales for the October-December quarter rose 0.1 percent on a like-for-like basis to 17 billion euros ($18 billion), slightly below analysts' expectations for 17.2 billion, according to Thomson Reuters Smart Estimates.
The cash-and-carry business that serves independent traders, hotels and restaurants saw sales rise 0.7 percent on a like-for-like basis, helped by growth in Spain, Turkey and China.
However, Real hypermarkets, which will be spun off later this year with the cash-and-carry business, saw same store sales fall 1.7 percent due to a weak start to Christmas trade, while Media-Saturn consumer electronics had flat like-for-like sales. (Reporting by Emma Thomasson; Editing by Georgina Prodhan)