(Adds details on performance of different formats, expansion plans, share price, context)
SAO PAULO, April 13 (Reuters) - Shares in GPA, one of Brazil’s largest food retailers, rose almost 1 percent on Friday after the firm reported a strong rise in quarterly net revenue, with the company’s wholesale format continuing to drive growth.
In a securities filing before the market opened on Friday, GPA, owned by France’s Casino Guichard Perrachon SA, said net revenue rose 7.5 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier to 11.34 billion reais ($3.33 billion).
Same store sales, a measure of sales at stores open for at least 12 months, grew 4.4 percent, the company said.
The results indicate food deflation has not deterred a sustained upswing for Brazil’s major food retailers, which have benefited from growing consumer confidence in Latin America’s largest economy and have had success with the cash-and-carry format, which offers a wholesale experience to final customers.
Same-store sales at GPA’s cash-and-carry format, known as Assai, jumped 10.3 percent on the quarter, while same-store sales at the company’s more traditional Multivarejo format ticked up 0.4 percent.
The company said it opened a new Assai store in the northeastern state of Sergipe during the period, and it currently has four more Assai stores under construction. It is also converting one Multivarejo store into an Assai store, in line with “a strong expansion rhythm for the year.”
Shares in GPA jumped 0.88 percent in early trading, while Brazil’s benchmark Bovespa was down 0.40 percent.
$1 = 3.40 reais Reporting by Gram Slattery; Editing by Bernadette Baum