Spanish retailer Eroski has posted a profit of €48 million in the first half of its financial year ended 31 July 2020.
The retailer reported a 7.2% year-on-year growth in sales to €2.4 billion in this period, driven by an increase in activity in the food sector.
Food sales in the company grew by 12% due to the pandemic and subsequent increase in the popularity of proximity stores.
'Socially Exceptional Situation'
General director of Red Comercial, Rosa Carabel, described it as "a socially exceptional situation that has caused a better performance in sales, but at the same time, has generated an increase in expenses derived from the need to offer the best customer service, guaranteeing a safe environment.”
The main expenses for the retailer included investments in protective equipment, security and cleaning in stores, as well as the reinforcement of teams to offer optimal services.
This resulted in creating 1,562 new roles during the first six months.
Elsewhere, the parent cooperative of Eroski closed the first half with a profit of €5.6 million, with sales amounting to €988 million, up 15% year-on-year.
The company repaid financial debt worth €40 million in this period, maintaining a repayment rate above that established in its refinancing agreement.
The retailer invested €31.2 million to open 37 new stores during the first half, which include 4 Eroski supermarkets, 1 cash and carry outlet and 32 franchised establishments.
It has transferred €138 million of savings to its client partners through personalised offers and promotions.