Dow Jones Newswires: Ahold Delhaize lifts guidance, announces $1 billion in buybacks as profit rises

United States

Royal Ahold Delhaize NV on Wednesday raised its full-year adjusted EPS guidance and announced a new 1 billion euro ($ 1.01 billion) share buyback as it reported a 13% rise in third-quarter net profit.

The Dutch grocer AD, +0.81% attributed its performance to positive contributions from comparable sales growth excluding gasoline, foreign currency translation benefits, and higher gasoline sales.

Ahold made a net profit for the quarter of EUR589 million, compared with EUR522 million for the year-earlier period and a consensus of EUR590 million, taken from the company’s website.

Net sales rose to EUR22.41 billion from EUR18.55 billion the prior year, a rise of 9.1% on a constant-exchange basis. This compares with a consensus of EUR21.75 billion, according to a company-compiled consensus.

Like-for-like U.S. net sales excluding gas rose 8.2%, while European sales climbed 7.4%, the company said.

Quarterly underlying earnings per share–which strips out exceptional and other one-off items–rose to 70 European cents from 53 cents, up 18% on a constant-exchange basis, it said.

For the year ahead, the company now expects to report low-double-digit diluted underlying EPS growth for the year, up from previous guidance of mid-single-digit underlying earnings-per-share growth.

Write to Ian Walker at