Written on the 23 February 2015

STRONG sales have driven Greencross Limited (ASX: GXL) to a record result with the company's underlying NPAT being up 81 per cent to $19 million.

Revenue was up 34 per cent from the previous corresponding period to $307.5 million, while underlying EBITDA was up 62 per cent to $41.6 million, excluding the one off acquisition and integration costs of City Farmers.

The underlying businesses performed strongly over the period across all geographic segments. The result was driven by the City Farmers acquisition, new store openings and vet acquisitions.

GXL CEO Jeffrey David says it is a "very pleasing result".

"In a period where YTD we have strengthened our growth platform by increasing our location count by 30 per cent or 75 locations to 321, our team has again delivered Group LFL sales growth of 6.3 per cent underpinning total sales growth of 43 per cent," says David.

"This translated into a 48 per cent increase in EPS to 17.2c and represents 48 per cent of our full year FY2015 underlying EPS guidance of 36 cents, which we again reconfirm."

In the first six months of this fiscal year, GXL has added 61 retail stores and 14 clinics to its network.

GXL is currently working on integrating Greencross and Mammoth the veterinary and retail divisions of the business.

This is in effort to streamline the pet care process and lift counter sales.

Retail remerchandising has been completed in 30 veterinary clinics to date, with a further 50 planned for completion by the end of fiscal year 2015.

"Our focus is to make it easier for our customers to enjoy their life with their pet, and it's a win/win for our customers and us," says David.

"A great example is our puppy preschool program where our vet and retail teams are able to work together to provide behavioural training to puppies and at the same advise the new pet parents on the products that they will need to make the puppy's entry into its new family happier."

GXL's half year dividend has increased by 45 per cent to 8c per share, to be paid on March 31.






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