UPDATE 2-Carrefour to spend on European revival while China lags

jueves 10 de marzo de 2016 10:17 GYT

* Proposes raising its 2015 dividend by 2.9 percent

* Operating profit rose 2.4 pct to 2.45 billion euros

* Operating profit rose 33.4 percent in Europe (Recasts with shares, CEO, CFO comments, analyst)

By Dominique Vidalon

PARIS, March 10 (Reuters) - Carrefour, the world's second-largest retailer, vowed to renovate and open more stores to keep its European turnaround on track, while warning it would take time to revive its loss-making Chinese business.

The French firm disappointed investors with a lower-than-expected dividend hike and its shares fell on Thursday, despite it recording a fourth straight year of revenue and earnings growth and increased free cash flow last year.

Carrefour proposed raising its 2015 dividend by 2.9 percent to 0.70 euros a share after operating profit rose 2.4 percent to 2.45 billion euros ($2.7 billion), in line with a Thomson Reuters poll forecast.

Europe's biggest retailer and the world's second-largest after Wal-Mart, also said it was waiting for the right time to float property unit Carmila, which several analysts estimate is worth at least 4 billion euros.

By 1312 GMT Carrefour shares were off 3.10 percent at 24.55 euros, the sole decliner on the CAC-40 index of French blue chips.   Continuación...