Thomson Reuters Corp reported a stronger-than-expected quarterly profit and affirmed its expectation that revenue will grow in 2009.

The news and financial data publisher, formed by Thomson Corp's purchase of Reuters Group Plc in April 2008, said on Thursday first quarter net income was $228 million, or 27 cents a share on a GAAP basis, versus $194 million, or 30 cents a share, a year ago.

Profit excluding special items was 40 cents per share, beating the average analyst forecast of 34 cents, according to Reuters Estimates.

Revenue from ongoing businesses was $3.12 billion, down 3 percent from a year ago. Analysts on average were expecting revenue of $3.17 billion, according to Reuters Estimates.

The company reaffirmed its outlook for revenue to grow in 2009, and for underlying operating margin and free cash flow to be comparable to 2008, supported by revenue growth and the expected savings from integration programs.

Shares of Thomson Reuters, which were up 3.5 percent at 1,921 pence before the results, continued to trade at that level after the announcement.

(Reporting by Georgina Prodhan and Tiffany Wu; Editing by Ted Kerr)