Ahold profit falls after unit disposal; sales rise

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AMSTERDAM (AP) — Royal Ahold NV, the Dutch operator of US supermarket chains Stop & Shop and Giant, says its underlying profit rose in the second quarter due to slow but steady economic growth.

Net profit fell 17 percent to 206 million euros ($275 million) because company sold its 50 percent stake in Scandinavian chain ICA earlier this year. Sales were 7.8 billion euros, up 1 percent — restating last years' figures to remove ICA.

CEO Dick Boer said sales grew at 3 percent comparing like for like and ignoring currency effects. US sales grew 2 percent and Dutch sales 5.6 percent.

He said the company won market share in the U.S., and operating margins had improved slightly from a year ago.

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