CANADA: Couche-Tard FY Profit Tops US$1bn

Alimentation Couche-Tard has raised its dividends after reporting strong fourth-quarter growth, which helped boost its full-year profits.

For the three months to 24 April, overall revenues were up 1.5% to US$7.4bn, but general merchandise and service revenues increased by 15.9% to $2.4bn, with same-store sales up 3.2% in the US and up 2.2% in Canada and Europe, even as net profit jumped up 60% to $126m.

The results meant full-year revenue was down 1.1% to US$34.1bn, but net profit grew by 28.4% to $1.2bn, the first time it has topped the $1bn mark.  The group said it was helped by its focus on general merchandise, particularly the wider fresh food offer, which has driven increased customer traffic. It was also helped by acquisitions throughout the year.

Couche-Tard raised its quarterly dividend by 15% to 7.75 cents Canadian.