March 4, 2019 / 4:19 AM / 17 days ago

China's Sun Art Retail says aims to open 25 new stores this year

FILE PHOTO: A customer looks around products at Sun Art Retail Group's Auchan hypermarket store in Beijing, China, November 9, 2015. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

HONG KONG (Reuters) - China’s major hypermarket operator Sun Art Retail Group Ltd expects to open 25 new stores in the country this year and also return to positive growth in 2019, its top executives said on Monday.

The executives were speaking at an earnings press conference a day after the company reported a 7.3 percent fall in 2018 profit, missing market expectations, amid fierce competition including from online rivals.

Reporting by Donny Kwok; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier

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