(Corrects last paragraph to say Dollarama’s shares have risen, not fallen, 41 pct)
March 25 (Reuters) - Canadian discount chain Dollarama Inc’s quarterly profit rose about 21 percent, helped by higher same-store sales and an increase in the number of stores.
The company, which sells items priced up to C$3, said same-store sales rose 8.5 percent in the fourth quarter, compared with 1.1 percent a year earlier.
The Montreal-based company’s transactions rose 3.6 percent. They fell last year due to a severe winter and power outages that led the company to temporarily close about 80 stores.
Dollarama said on Wednesday it opened 27 stores in the fourth quarter and 81 stores in the year ended Feb. 1, taking its total store count to 955.
The company said average spending by customers per trip rose as sales from products priced higher than C$1 increased to 71.5 percent during the fourth quarter from 61 percent a year earlier.
The company, which is facing competition from Dollar Tree Inc and Wal-Mart Stores Inc who are expanding their presence in Canada, raised its dividend by 1 Canadian cent per share to 9 Canadian cents.
Dollarama’s net income rose to C$100.3 million ($80.2 million), or 76 Canadian cents per share, from C$83 million, or 59 Canadian cents per share.
Revenue rose 14.9 percent to C$669.1 million.
Dollarama’s shares, which have risen 41 percent in six months, closed at C$66.30 on Tuesday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
$1 = 1.25 Canadian dollars Reporting by Anet Josline Pinto in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel