EUROPE: Jeronimo Martins, Kesko, X5 Retail Report Strong Q1 Growth

The Jeronimo Martins, Kesko, X5 Retail groups have all reported strong profit and sales growth for its respective fiscal quarters.

In Portugal, Jeronimo Martins saw its net profit grow by 19% to €77m, while sales were up 6% to €3.4bn. Sales at its domestic Pingo Doce supermarket banner grew by 5.8%, with the Biedronka discount banner in Poland reporting a 5.1% increase (9.3% in local currency terms), and the Recheio cash & carry unit seeing a 4.3% increase.

CEO Pedros Soares dos Santos said the results “confirm the LFL momentum in both Poland and Portugal.” He also noted that the Ara banner continued to do well in Colombia.

Meanwhile, Finnish group Kesko saw its first-quarter operating profit grow by 26.7% to €32.3m (on an adjusted basis), while sales edged up 0.2% to €2.01bn (on a constant-currency basis, excluding Anttila).

CEO Mikko Helander noted: “Despite intense competition, grocery trade performance was stable and profitability remained at a good level”. He added that full-year sales are expected to exceed last year’s figures, while underlying operating profit will match the 2015 levels.

And finally, Russia’s X5 Retail group saw its net profit jump up 23% to 5.1bn roubles, with EBITDA up 25.6% to 16.5bn roubles. Meanwhile, revenue was up 26.8% to 231.6bn roubles, helped by growth across all its banners except Express. X5 however noted that gross margins were down in the quarter (by 31bps to 24.3%), as last year’s figures were boosted by the sale of stock in Q4 of 2014 to lock in lower prices.