ICA shareholders reap 610m kronor rewards

Swedish supermarket chain ICA has announced a profit after tax of 1.523 billion kronor for 2005 - up from 1.516 billion the year before.

Income was 71.7 billion kronor, compared to 73.3 billion in 2004.

In announcing the results the ICA board revealed that they have decided to sell the Ica Meny subsidiary, which distributes products to restaurants and canteens.

In the fourth quarter of 2005 ICA made a profit after tax of 455 million kronor, compared to 294 million kronor in the same period of the previous year. Turnover climbed to 19.3 billion kronor from 19.5 billion kronor in 2005.

Managing director Kenneth Bengtsson wrote in the report that ICA was expecting the fierce competition in the market to continue in 2006.

“But we are focused on reaching a position of market leadership in Sweden, Norway and the Baltics,” he wrote.

The board and managing director is proposing doling out 610 million kronor to the shareholders, Holland’s Royal Ahold, which owns 60%, and Swedish Hakon Invest, which owns the remainder.

TT/The Local