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Ahold Delhaize Q2 Group Net Sales Up 17.1%

Ahold Delhaize reported a 17.1% growth in group net sales for the second quarter, driven largely by 16.4% comparable sales growth excluding gasoline.

Group comparable sales were mainly driven by demand related to COVID-19 and, to a lesser extent, benefited from the comparison against Q2 2019, when the strike and subsequent recovery at Stop & Shop in the U.S. unfavorably impacted sales by 2.0 percentage points.

The company's second-quarter net income was €693 million or €0.65 per share.

Group underlying operating margin in the quarter was 5.3%, up 1.7 percentage points from the prior year at constant exchange rates, benefiting largely from higher operating leverage due to higher sales trends related to COVID-19 as well as lapping the roughly €90 million operating profit headwind caused by the strike at Stop & Shop in the U.S. in the prior year's quarter.

For fiscal 2020, the company raised its underlying outlook to low-to-mid-20% growth from mid-single-digit growth.

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