Swedish retailer ICA Gruppen has reported a 1.2 decline in sales in October 2021 compared with the corresponding month last year.
Sales in like-for-like stores decreased by 1.5% compared to last year.
Sales in the retailer's stores amounted to SEK 10.7 billion, excluding VAT.
The calendar effect in October is estimated to be -0.7% and as of 31 October 2021, the number of ICA stores was 1,266, the company added.
In the January-October period, the company generated sales worth SEK 109.3 billion, an increase of 1.1% compared with the previous year.
In terms of store formats, the Maxi ICA Stormarknad generated the highest amount in sales, of SEK 3.4 billion, in October.
ICA Kvantum, ICA Supermarket, and convenience chain ICA Nära earned SEK 2.6 billion, SEK 3.1 billion, and SEK 1.6 billion respectively.
Last year, the group benefitted from a strong e-commerce performance, as it posted sales of SEK 91.7 billon (€9.09 billion) for the year, up from SEK 85.2 billion in 2019
In the fourth quarter of 2020, e-commerce accounted for 45% of sales growth, the group said, and more than 30% for the entire year.
"Our e-commerce continues to grow faster than the market, but overall we are growing a bit more slowly than the market given that our market share is lower online," Per Strömberg CEO of ICA, said.
"However, the e-commerce contribution is steadily improving, and continuing that trend is an important part of the puzzle for restoring profitability over the long term."
Since then, the group has migrated to Ocado's e-commerce platform, and began operating a new dark store in Gothenburg.
Another automated dark store is scheduled to open in Stockholm in 2022.
© 2021 European Supermarket Magazine. Article by Conor Farrelly. For more Retail news, click here. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.