Carrefour Operating Profit Tops Target

French supermarket group Carrefour said on Thursday first-half recurring net profit edged up 0.1% to 741 million euros, beating market forecasts, and reaffirmed its targets.

Operating profit rose 0.3% to 1.364 billion euros on net sales up 5.5%t at 38.845 billion euros as price discounting in core European markets offset growth elsewhere.

The world's second biggest retailer said operating profit in France fell 5.8% to 734 million euros and international profit rose 8.5% to 630 million.

Analysts had on average forecast group net profit of 732 million euros and operating profit of 1.354 billion, including French profits of 741 million euros.

Carrefour repeated its earlier forecast that sales would grow more quickly in 2007 than in 2006 and also outpace operating profit growth.

It said it it expected to list its real estate vehicle Carrefour Property in 2008, containing 60% of its estimated total property value of 20-24 billion euros.

"We plan to open a portion of the capital of this vehicle worth around 3 billion euros to otside investors," it said.