The turnover and profitability of the JUMBO Group have reached a new historical record, as reveal the analytical data of the Balance Sheet for the overall fiscal year from July 1st, 2005 to June 30th, 2006, published today in the Financial Press. In a tough period for the Greek retail trade, the turnover of JUMBO stores presents an impressive increase of 23% to 281 million Euro, which is due both to the activity of the new JUMBO stores in Greece, and to the conquest of new market shares thanks to the effective price and promotion policy implemented by the existing network of the Groups stores. The Jumbo stores currently cover the needs of 32% of the toy, baby articles and stationary market, while the consumers in both Greece and Cyprus discover day by day that full service at affordable prices is synonymous with JUMBO stores… The published balance sheets feature the important improvement in the gross profit margin by 191 base points which is due partly to the strengthening of Euro, and partly to the Group’s ability to procure itself very big quantities of products, as well as new product suggestions at extremely low prices for the final benefit of its clients. The financial analysts should particularly take note of the expenses containment, which was translated in ΕΒΙΤDA margin of 29.45% from 28.05% and earnings before, interests, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of 82.8 million Euro, while the lower tax rates currently in force in Greece contributed so that the final result be increased by net margin after taxes of 17.36% against 14.90% in the previous year. The above are translated in net profits for the shareholders, amounting to 49.4 million Euro, i.e. increased by +45% in comparison to the previous fiscal year. Accordingly increased will be the dividend to be enjoyed by the loyal shareholders – partners of the Group, despite the ever accelerating investment policy of the Group in Greece and the Balkans. The JUMBO Group currently covers the needs of the Greek Market with a network of 38 hyper stores. Since August 2006 operates the new store in Lamia, while, as the management disclosed in the recent general meeting of shareholders, the new strategy of metropolitan stores in Athens and Piraeus shall be implemented in the next biennium. Moreover, by the end of the year shall be completed the expansion of the new ultra modern storehouses which will henceforth cover 135,000 sq m of roofed areas, aiming at the better management of the Group’s stocks. In parallel, in the early September the issuing of the company’s convertible corporate bond of €42,432,150 with coverage percentage of 100% was successfully completed. With regard to the international activities of the Group, the developments are dramatic: In Cyprus, the subsidiary company Jumbo Trading Ltd has already created an effective network of 3 hyper stores, while the operation license granting procedure for the fourth store in Larnaca, the extent of which will surpass 7.000 sq m, has almost been completed. In Bulgaria, the Group made its first steps by founding the subsidiary company "Jumbo EC.B" in Sofia, Bulgaria, and works have already begun for the operation of the first privately-owned hyper store of 15,000 sq m at a shopping centre under construction in the city centre. The plans of the Group in Bulgaria also include the further exploitation of the newly acquired lots in Sofia, but their pace of materialization shall depend on the successful process of our neighboring country’s accession to the Euro Area… Since the early August, operates in Romania the Group’s new subsidiary company "Jumbo EC.R" seated in Bucharest and the investment plans’ development in this country is also exponential.