Paris French retailer Carrefour SA hit its earnings targets in 2009 after higher sales in Brazil and China helped lift revenue 1% in the fourth quarter.
Carrefour reported sales of euro26 billion (US$38 billion) in the three months to Dec. 31, up from euro25.7 billion a year earlier.
Higher sales in Brazil, Carrefour's biggest market outside of its home base in Europe, and a return to growth in China, where the French retailer opened 22 new hypermarkets last year, were largely responsible for the quarterly performance.
The growth in Brazil and China helped offset another disappointing quarter at home, where Carrefour recorded lower sales, including a 2.7% drop in its core hypermarkets division.
Carrefour said in a separate statement that Gilles Petit, who had run Carrefour's French operations since 2008, will be replaced by former Tesco executive James McCann next month, Carrefour said. A Carrefour spokeswoman said Petit would remain with Carrefour as an "adviser to the CEO on special projects."
Overall Carrefour posted revenue of euro96 billion last year, down 1.4% from 2008.
CEO Lars Olofsson said the company was on the right strategic course to gain market share this year. He cited "the resilience of our sales" and "unprecedented efforts to reduce costs" as among the ways Carrefour managed to achieve its targeted operating profit and free cash flow last year.