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Stockmann issues better-than-expected 2019 profit warning

The group's retail business has been struggling in recent years.

Stockmann department store in downtown Helsinki. Image: Yle News / Mark B. Odom

Finnish retailer Stockmann Group has announced its adjusted operating profit for 2019 was better than previously estimated.

The retail group, which has struggled in recent years, said its adjusted operating profit for last year would be on par with 2018 profit levels. The company said the improved outlook was due to good business at its department stores as well as at its Lindex fashion chain.

"According to preliminary figures the Stockmann Group’s adjusted operating profit for 2019 is better than earlier estimated," the group said in a release.

Shares in Stockmann Group rose on the Helsinki Stock Exchange, following Thursday's announcement, pushing up the price of its A- and B- shares by up to 20 percent by midday.

The company issued the profit warning about one month before it was scheduled to publish its official financial statement bulletin; on 13 February, when the group will also explain how Christmas sales fared.

Stockmann Group is made up of three businesses: its retail department stores and online sales, a real estate division as well as the Lindex fashion retail chain of stores.

While Lindex and its real estate divisions are doing well, its retail business has been lagging for some time. The company recently updated its e-commerce business and implemented a new app-based customer rewards programme.