Fnac Darty's turnover rose slightly in 2019, as new activities were successfully integrated. The French electronics group remains cautious for 2020.
The group's full-year turnover went up 3.0 % to 7.35 billion euros (excluding the Netherlands), but the increase was just 0.7 % on a like-for-like base. Fnac Darty says French turnover was negatively impacted by the 'yellow vests' movement in the first quarter, and protests against pension reforms at the end of the year, and said the total damage due to social protests amounted to 70 million euros.
France and Switzerland saw turnover rise 3.4 %, but the operational margin went down to 4.3 % as the successful integration of Nature & Découvertes was more than offset by disappointing sales due to the aforementioned social protests. Turnover in Belgium and Luxembourg rose by 0.3 % to 596 million euros, but there was a 0.4 % drop on comparable base. Here too, operational margins went down: from 2.5 % to just 1.9 %.
Operating income went down 3.6 % from 304 million to 293 million, even though the companies that were acquired in 2019 added 20 million euros to that result. Net profit was 114 million euros, down more than a quarter from the 158 million euros of a year earlier - a drop that was mainly caused by "increased financial expenses".
Due to the volatile climate - both economically and socially - the group remains cautious for the current year, hoping for a slight rise in turnover and profit. Mid-term goals are a higher-than-average growth and an operational margin that is lifted from 4 % to somewhere between 4.5 % and 5 %.