George Weston profit jumps, boosts div

Tue May 7, 2013 8:34am EDT
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May 7 (Reuters) - George Weston Ltd, the Canadian food producer and distributor that controls the Loblaw Cos Ltd grocery chain, reported a 36 percent rise in first-quarter profit, helped by foreign currency benefits, and raised its dividend by 9 percent.

Net earnings for the quarter rose to C$225 million ($223 million), or C$1.18 per share, from C$166 million, or 87 Canadian cents per share, a year earlier.

Revenue rose 4 percent to C$7.49 billion.

George Weston raised its quarterly dividend for the second time in six months to 41.5 Canadian cents per share.

Loblaw said last week it would continue to produce its Joe Fresh clothing in Bangladesh after a deadly textile factory collapse on April 24, but promised to improve the facilities it uses there.