September 10, 2009 / 5:28 PM / in 8 years

UPDATE 1-North West Co Q2 profit rises, boosts distribution

* Q2 earnings/unit C$0.43 vs C$0.38 yr ago

* Q2 consolidated sales up 7.3 pct

* Raises qtrly distribution by 6.3 pct to C$0.34/unit

Sept 10 (Reuters) - Canadian food products retailer North West Company Fund NWF_u.TO posted an 11 percent rise in second-quarter profit, helped by strength at its discount stores and improved margins, and boosted its quarterly distribution.

For the second quarter ended July 31, net earnings were C$20.5 million, or 43 Canadian cents per unit, compared with C$18.4 million, or 38 Canadian cents per unit, a year earlier.

Consolidated sales rose 7.3 percent to C$367.5 million. International sales rose more than 5 percent to C$120.2 million.

Net capital expenditures for 2009 are expected to be about C$64 million, compared with C$49.4 million a year ago, reflecting new stores and gas bars, pharmacy acquisitions and openings, among other factors, North West said.

The fund also raised its regular quarterly distribution by 6.3 percent to 34 Canadian cents per unit, distributable by Oct. 15 to unitholders of record on Sept. 30.

Units of the company, whose discount banners include Cost-U-Less and Giant Tiger, were up 3 percent at C$16.50 Thursday afternoon on the Toronto Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Koustav Samanta in Bangalore; Editing by Deepak Kannan)

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