Saturday, 18 November, 2017

Sainsbury's pre-tax profit falls 8%

Sainsburys Announce Rise In Sales For First Quarter Source Getty
Kelvin Reese | 04 May, 2017, 01:17

It is the third year of underlying profit decline for the supermarket which made £581mn in the year to March 11, down from £587mn in the previous year.

"The market place this year has been one of the most interesting, challenging and volatile that I've ever experienced in my working lifetime". The supermarket is accelerating plans to put 250 Argos Digital stores in its branches, it said on Wednesday.

But the "competitive and uncertain trading environment" took its toll on the group's profit margin.

Britain's top share index fell on Wednesday, weighed down by weaker commodity stocks, while supermarket Sainsbury's (SBRY.L) dropped after an underwhelming earnings update.

Nonetheless, Coupe added Sainsbury's continues to find ways to simplify its business and reduce costs, and is on track to deliver its three-year GBP500m cost saving programme by the end of 2017/18, plus a further GBP500m of cost savings over three years from 2018/19.

The company reported pretax profit of £180mn for the half-year to the end of March which is 41% up from £128mn the same period past year.

As of 08:25 BST, Sainsbury's share price had fallen 2.47 percent to 272.60p, underperforming the broader London market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index now 0.24 percent worse off at 7,232.40 points.

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Sainsbury's is struggling to keep up with supermarket rivals and discounters in a United Kingdom grocery market under pressure from a Brexit-induced fall in the pound.

The catalogue retailer, which was acquired by Sainsbury's for £1.4bn in September a year ago, saw sales, climb 4.1%.

Sainsbury's, which trails market leader Tesco in annual sales, also cautioned that it saw no let-up in the intensely competitive United Kingdom market any time soon.

"We are pleased with the progress made since we acquired Argos".

Across Europe, the French Cac 40 fell 0.0.6% while the German Dax rose 0.16%. It also increased sales and market share in new and growing categories such as On the Go, launched in September 2016, which included sandwiches with meat and vegetable fillings. The grocer has added 59 Argos concessions in its stores.

Sainsbury's said it would commit to a further £500 million in cost cuts over the next three years, starting in the 2018/2019 fiscal year, after having achieved around £130 million in the past fiscal year.

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