Belgian distribution group Delhaize has closed the first quarter with a profit of 61 million euro, much better than the loss of 3 million euro in the same quarter in the previous year.
A few weeks ago Delhaize published preliminary quarterly results, which were all confirmed: 214 million euro company profit, comparable sales growth of +1.9% in the United States and +2.4% in Belgium and strong profit margins in the US (4.2%) and Belgium (5.1%). One number, that of sales, was upped a little bit: company sales were 5.52 billion euro; a few weeks ago the number was 5.5 billion euro.
“We had a strong first quarter, supported by higher sales and profitability at Delhaize America and Delhaize Belgium, partly due to the favourable weather conditions. The repositioned shops of Food Lion continue to perform well and in Belgium consumer behaviour was stronger than expected. The activities in South-Eastern Europe were influenced by price investments in Greece and the high inflation in other countries”, said Pierre-Olivier Beckers, who recently announced his resignation, which was quite the surprise.
In Belgium Delhaize had sales of 1.2 billion euro in the past quarter. “The market inflation of 2.2% and the expansion were the most important aspects for this growth. The underlying company profit rose by 13.4% to 63 million euro.” The Belgian distribution group confirms its year goal for an underlying company profit of 775 million euro, 3.6% lower than the previous year.