November 5, 2013 / 7:28 AM / 6 years ago

AB Foods results beat forecasts on Primark growth

Shoppers pass a Primark store in Loughborough, central England, November 4, 2008. REUTERS/Darren Staples

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Associated British Foods (ABF.L) reported a 13 percent rise in full-year profit on Tuesday as its Primark discount fashion chain expanded apace, although it expects a hit from falling sugar prices next year.

AB Foods reported adjusted pretax profit of 1.096 billion pounds for the financial year to September 14, on revenues up 9 percent to 13.3 billion pounds, beating average analyst expectations.

Adjusted earnings per share rose 13 percent to 98.9 pence,

Primark, which has more than 250 stores in Britain and Europe and generates more than a quarter of group sales, has performed well through the economic downturn thanks to its low prices and quick adoption of fashion trends.

AB Foods said it expected Primark’s continued expansion as well as growth in its grocery business should boost profits in those units next year, although it forecast a further fall in profit from its AB Sugar business as European sugar prices drop.

Analysts had expected the group to report revenue of 13.24 billion pounds, pretax profit of 1.06 billion and earnings per share of 97.79 pence, according to SmartEstimates from Thomson Reuters.

Reporting by Emma Thomasson; Editing by Victoria Bryan

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