Supermarket operators report mixed results for 1st six months

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People shop at a Puregold grocery mart in Libertad, Pasay, Philippines August 23, 2013

SUPERMARKET operators reported mixed results for the first half of 2018, while posting higher same-store sales growth for the period.

In a statement issued Monday, Puregold Price Club, Inc. (PGOLD) said net income grew by 25.6% in the first six months of 2018 to P3.08 billion, followed by a 13.2% jump in consolidated net sales to P64.03 billion.

Puregold stores contributed the bulk of the company’s revenues, or 79%, while the remaining 21% came from S&R Membership warehouse clubs and S&R New York Style Pizza stores.

Puregold and S&R’s same-store sales growth stood at 6.1% and 5.9%, respectively. The company said it benefited from higher consumer spending due to increased levels of take-home pay after the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion law.

The company ended the first half of the year with a total of 393 stores. Of this, 341 are Puregold stores, 16 are S&R membership shopping warehouse, and 36 are S&R New York Style quick service restaurants.

PGOLD said it is on track to construct 25 new Puregold stores this year, in addition to two new S&R warehouses as part of its expansion plans for 2018.

Meanwhile, Metro Retail Stores Group, Inc. (MRSGI) saw its net income drop by 17% to P254.2 million from P305.2 million in the second quarter of 2018, as revenues likewise dipped 5.8% to P8 billion.

The company attributed the lower results to the impact of the fire that razed its department store and supermarket in Ayala Center Cebu last January.

“The year may have started on a challenging note, but our retail sales performance remains strong and this has allowed us to move forward with greater stability and confidence,” MRSGI Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Frank S. Gaisano was quoted as saying in a statement.

Despite the profit decline, MRSGI recorded a same-store sales growth of 4.6%, which it noted is the highest for the past nine quarters.

For the first six months of the year, MRSGI’s net income slowed 14% to P344 million, while revenues went down 8.8% to P14.9 billion.

Mr. Gaisano noted the company has already started to re-build its flagship store in Cebu.

“Rest assured that we are doing our best to accelerate the first phase of the store’s re-launch within the year,” he added.

MRSGI currently operates 51 stores across Central, Western, and Eastern Visayas, Central Luzon, Metro Manila, and South Luzon. It is looks to further expand its presence in Visayas and Luzon, with plans to double the gross floor area it had in 2015 by 2020.

Shares in PGOLD slipped by 1.32% or 60 centavos to close at P45 each at the stock exchange on Monday, while shares in MRSGI dropped 2.44% or seven centavos to close at P2.80 each. — Arra B. Francia