Supermarket group Somerfield has reported strong full-year results, but has revealed a slip in recent trading.

Announcing full-year results to end April 30, Somerfield chief executive, Steve Beck, said that pre-tax operating profit was up 63% at £66.4m while pre-tax profits had also increased 63% to £53.1m.

However, the group’s trading update for the nine weeks of the new financial year to July 2 revealed a 2.7% drop in group like-for-like sales. Somerfield like-for-like sales were down 0.7% while Kwik Save sales dropped 6.8%.

Like-for-like sales for the full-year slipped just 0.1%, while group like-for-like sales were down 0.4%.

Beck said that sales had been helped by the continuing shift from Kwik Save to Somerfield in which 76 Kwik Saves stores were converted to the Somerfield format during the year.

He added that talks with interested parties for a possible takeover of the group had reached an advanced stage, but there was still no certainty that an offer would be made.

The interested parties include a consortium led by Icelandic retailer, Baugur, Barclays Capital, Robert Tchenguiz and Apax Partners.

However, doubts remain over whether Baugur will be able to stay in the consortium after six of its senior executives were charged with fraud in Iceland last week. All six deny any wrongdoing.

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