The Arcandor Group, owner of Germany's largest department store chain, has reiterated its outlook for next year despite posting a loss for the 12 months to 30 September.

The company blamed one-time restructuring costs for the decline, which pushed it to a net loss of EUR745m (US$1.02bn) for the year.

Adjusted group earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) for fiscal 2007/8, rose 19.4% to EUR820m, from EUR687m last time.

Group sales fell 1.1% to EUR19.9bn from EUR20.1bn.

The tourism and retail group said its four-year reorganisation had been successful, but that it was disappointed with its Karstadt department store unit which posted a loss of EUR4m as sales fell 3.4% to EUR4.1bn.

It blamed a poor Christmas last year, high costs, store refurbushments and a failed discounting policy. 

Other group businesses include Thomas Cook travel, which accounts for 60% of Group turnover and 90% of operating profit, and the Primondo home shopping unit, where sales rose 6.7% to EUR4.3bn from EUR4.0bn.

"Arcandor finds itself overall on a good track and has held its own in a tense market environment affected by a unique financial crisis, extreme changes in energy prices and a massively cloudy economic outlook," said Dr Thomas Middelhoff, chairman of the board.

He added that Karstadt and Quelle have got off to a "satisfactory start" for the Christmas season - and confirmed the Group's forecast for a 34% jump in adjusted operating EBITDA to more than EUR1.1bn in the current financial year 2008/2009.