Aeon Co has reported a net loss for its fiscal first quarter, the first such event in seven years for the period.
For the three months to 31 May, the conglomerate reported a net loss of 6.2bn yen, reversing last year’s 5bn yen profit. Operating profit was down 6% to 32.8bn yen, while sales rose by a modest 1% to 2.04trn yen.
The group said it was affected by weaker demand for general merchandise, even as it admitted it was “late” in launching discount products, which meant it was “unable to fully capture increasingly price-sensitive consumers”. However, the supermarkets and drugstore operations reported strong growth, helped in part by an increased local offer.
Despite the results, Aeon reiterated its full-year outlook of net profit jumping up 66% to 10bn yen.