PROFITS at Colchester and East Essex Co-op are up for the 11th year running.
Sales were £ 141 million and trading profit was £ 9.9 million for the year ending 22nd January, compared to £ 9.6 million in 2004. The members' individual dividend fund amounted to £ 1.7 million.
Chief Executive Chris Blanchett commented: "Given that 2004 was one of the toughest trading years I can recall, this year's result is particularly pleasing and I congratulate our employees on this achievement."
Trading profit was seven per cent of sales. Return on capital employed based on current property values reached double figures and the net asset value increased by £ 6 million to £ 65 million.
Mr Blanchett added: "It is also pleasing to note that this increase allowed Dividend to rise, with members' personal dividend equating to almost 2.4 pence in the pound (for qualifying purchases) and total distributions representing 20 per cent of disposable profit.
"In recent years our society has achieved the best operating margins in the retail Co-operative Movement. This year's results will ensure we again remain a strong contender for that position."