Centro’s rebrand strategy to Federation Centres is already paying off after the company revealed a solid result for the six months to 31 December 2012.

The company reported a statutory net profit of $115.9 million, with underlying earnings reaching $106.2million.

Supermarkets and specialty retailers, which make up approximately 75 per cent of Federation Centres’ total annual sales, achieved annual sales growth of 1.7 per cent. The mini major category, with 8 per cent of sales, increased turnover by 8 per cent. Department store sales, which represented 3 per cent of turnover, improved by 0.1 per cent.

Managing director and CEO Steven Sewell said its portfolio of Australian shopping centres anchored by supermarket was driving the results with retail sales up 2 per cent for the year.

“The key drivers were the continued strength in the performance of the portfolio and the improved financial position through release of capital and the restructure of debt facilities,” he said.

The company has expanded its redevelopment pipeline to be more than $1.1 billion. It plans to do this with more than $1 billion of working capital being raised from strategic alliance as through the $548 million of assets purchased from syndicates.

“Federation Centres is entering a new era where we can utilise our sound financial position and work with our strategic alliances to enhance our portfolio of Australian shopping centres, with the clear objective of providing sustainable returns for investors,” Sewell said.

“The portfolio continues to benefit from a strong exposure to non-discretionary spending. All retail categories showed growth, although department store sales remained subdued.”