October 14, 2018 / 9:48 PM / a month ago

Australia's Wesfarmers grocery unit total sales in first quarter up 5 pct

Oct 15 (Reuters) - Australian retail conglomerate Wesfarmers Ltd said on Monday that total first-quarter sales at its soon-to-be-spun-off supermarket division, Coles, grew 5 percent, helped by a promotional campaign and investments in its flybuys loyalty programme.

Sales came in at A$9.84 billion ($7 billion) for the Coles grocery unit for the three months to Sept. 30, the company said in a statement. It did not give prior guidance and analysts do not give quarterly forecasts for the company.

It was Wesfarmers’ last trading update about the Australian No. 2 grocery chain before it proceeds with a plan to spin it off next month and free up capital for higher-margin investments.

$1 = 1.4065 Australian dollars Reporting by Nikhil Kurian Nainan and Rushil Dutta in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Cooney

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