FINANCIAL WATCH

Ahold, Zaandam, Netherlands, last week said consolidated sales rose 38.4% in 1997 to $24.6 billion (NLG 50.5 billion), mainly due to the full year's contribution of Stop & Shop Cos., Quincy, Mass., which it acquired in July 1996. Fourth-quarter results and full-year earnings will be released March 10. In addition, sales of Brazilian supermarket company Bompreco were included in Ahold's financial results

Ahold, Zaandam, Netherlands, last week said consolidated sales rose 38.4% in 1997 to $24.6 billion (NLG 50.5 billion), mainly due to the full year's contribution of Stop & Shop Cos., Quincy, Mass., which it acquired in July 1996. Fourth-quarter results and full-year earnings will be released March 10. In addition, sales of Brazilian supermarket company Bompreco were included in Ahold's financial results for the first time.In the United States, sales amounted to $14.3 billion, a 27.1% increase. Sales rose at all of Ahold's U.S. supermarket chains, the company said. In the Netherlands, sales increased 6.5% to $7.7 billion. Sales rose at Albert Heijn by 5.2% and at Schuitema by 8.6%. Sales at Ahold Specialty Stores and Ahold Institutional Food Supply also increased.

he company said it also closed 94 stores, including the 61 in Texas and Oklahoma, and remodeled or expanded 99 stores. Food Lion said it will disclose earnings for the year and fourth quarter on Feb. 12.