Slovenia’s Mercator Group has announced that it achieved all its key business goals and saw improved performance year-on-year during the first nine months of 2021.
Operating profit amounted to €57.6 million, net profit for the period was €12.6 million, while normalised EBITDA increased 10.8% year-on-year, to €139.3 million.
In this period, the retail group, which is part of Fortenova Group, also further decreased its net financial debt, bringing the normalised EBITDA ratio to below five.
Sales revenue was up by nearly 1% to €1.6 billion, of which 79.1% was generated from its retail division – the Group’s core activity.
Commenting on its performance, Tomislav Čizmić, president of the Mercator Management Board, said, "After many years, Mercator has managed to reduce the ratio between net financial debt and normalized EBITDA below five times, which proves that strategic decisions give the right results.
"Financially sound and business-successful Mercator is not only in the interest of the company, employees and owners, but also the entire chain from producers to the food industry in Slovenia and the region."
Slovenia remained the main market for Mercator Group, accounting for 58.9% of sales revenue, followed by Serbia (30.5%), Bosnia and Herzegovina (4.9%), Montenegro (4.7%) and Croatia (0.9%).
Capex amounted to €20.9 million, of which 70.5% was invested in Slovenia, mainly for renovation of existing sales units.
In the nine month period, the retailer opened a total of 18 outlets, comprising 15 in Serbia and three in Slovenia. Elsewhere, around 195 stores were refurbished or had their layouts updated.
Čizmić added that the company will continue with strategic investments, especially in the new logistics and distribution centre in Ljubljana and the renovation of its sales network.
As of the end of September 2021, Mercator Group's network comprised 1,011 FMCG retail and 19 wholesale outlets.
In the first half, Mercator Group reported a net profit of €10.5 million, compared to a net loss of €69.2 million one year earlier.
© 2021 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Branislav Pekic. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine