Metro Group sees 3.7% decline in first nine months of 2009
Germany-based Metro Group generated EUR46.1 billion (USD67.1 billion) group sales from January to September 2009, a 3.7% drop compared to the same period last year. This decline was mainly attributed to negative currency effects in Eastern Europe and declining food price inflation. Some merchandise categories showed deflationary movement, the company said.
In local currency, Metro Group sales rose by 0.3%. Earnings before taxes generated from January to September 2009 amounted to EUR139 million (USD202 million) in comparison to EUR259 million (USD379 million) in the same period last year. Before special items the earnings before taxes stood at EUR274 million (USD399 million). The net profit came in at EUR82 million (USD119 million) following a loss of EUR206 million in the year-earlier period.
In Western Europe (excluding Germany), sales generated during the period decreased by 0.9% to EUR14.7 billion (USD21.4 billion). Excluding currency effects, sales went down by 0.3% and thus developed clearly better than the total market. In Germany, sales generated from January to September 2009 remained almost unchanged reaching EUR18.4 billion (USD26.8 billion). This was in particular owed to like-for-like sales growth at Media Markt and Saturn in the first and third quarter as well as at Real in the second quarter.
In Eastern Europe, net of currency effects, sales climbed by 2.6%. Due to very strong exchange rate effects sales translated into euros dropped by 13.0% to EUR11.2 billion (USD16.3 billion). In the Asia/Africa region, sales generated during the period grew by 9.2% to EUR1.8 billion, up 0.4% in local currency.
"The consistent restructuring of the group is paying off. Shape 2012 is beginning to take effect," stressed Dr Eckhard Cordes, CEO of Metro Group. The Shape 2012 efficiency and value enhancement programme, which comprises around 5,000 individual measures, is expected to gradually show its cumulative effect by 2012. The strength of the programme is not only the result of cost reductions but particularly in measures which aim to grow sales and enhance productivity, the company stressed.
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