The distribution group opened 11 stores in the national market during the first quarter of the year, reaching 1,160 stores. Spain was the country in Western Europe where its mass consumption business grew the most, that is, without counting gas stations.
The improvement in comparable income at the beginning of the year (+ 4.3% in January and February) and the acceleration of the business by Covid-19 increased Carrefour’s gross sales in Spain by 5.5%, to 2,281 million, during the first quarter of the year.
The figure includes the negative impact of the chain’s oil business, due to the reduction of the mobility of the population, which has resulted in less activity at its gas stations. Without this effect, Carrefour Spain sales would have grown 6.6% in the quarter, with a comparable rise of 6.3%. The group closed March with 1,160 stores in Spain, 11 more than at the end of the year.
The figures place Spain as the Western European market where Carrefour’s business grew the most in the quarter excluding gas stations, ahead of France (4.3%), Italy (2.5%) and Belgium (6.2%).
Globally, the company recorded sales of 19,445 million, 3.3% more. Without the currency effect, the increase was 7.5%, while if only food is accounted for, it grew 9.9%. The turnover of the online business rose 45%.
The group has reinforced its financing with a 1,000 million bond issue in March and new bank lines in Brazil. In addition, it has access to loans for 3,900 million.
Maintains its 2022 strategic plan
Carrefour announced yesterday that the crisis caused by Covid-19 will not delay the implementation of its strategic plan, which it plans to complete in 2022. The group, which considers that the measures it is adopting are bearing fruit, foresees open 2,700 convenience stores, reduce its hypermarkets network by 350,000 square meters, boost its white label to represent a third of sales and reduce its product assortment by 15% for that year.
In addition, its objective is to achieve online sales of € 4.2 billion and € 4.8 billion in organic products within two years. The plan also includes a cost reduction of 2,800 million a year and divestments of 300 million euros in non-strategic real estate assets.