Jumbo’s July-September sales up by 18 percent

Greece’s largest toy retailer, Jumbo, said yesterday sales rose 18 percent in the three months to September and are set to exceed its target for fiscal 2008. «During the first quarter of the financial year 2007/2008, sales increased by 18 percent year-on-year, which is ahead of the management’s guidance of a 12 to 15 percent sales increase,» the company said in a statement. Jumbo did not give a specific number for first-quarter sales but an 18 percent rise translates to -89.2 million, based on last year’s figures, according to Reuters calculations. In September, Jumbo said it expected 12-month profit to June 2008 to rise by up to 15 percent. Jumbo’s 12-month profit to June this year rose more than a third to -67.9 million, on sales of -342.7 million. The retailer, which also sells stationary and items for the home, said it was pushing to have its first new store in Bulgaria open in time for the peak Christmas sales period. The store will be one of three scheduled to open in the neighboring country, it said. It currently operates 39 stores in Greece and Cyprus. The company aims to maintain its share of the Greek market above 38 percent and plans to achieve this goal with -150 million worth of investments over the next three years, the statement said. Management reiterated it will propose a dividend of 32 cents a share for the past fiscal year, an increase of 39 percent year on the year before. (Reuters)