Stockholm / SE. (ica) A challenging market situation is reported by Sweden’s ICA Gruppen AB in its interim report for the third quarter 2022. Summary:
- Operating profit for the third quarter of 2022 (SEK 1,694 million) fell by 6.8 percent compared with the third quarter of 2021 (SEK 1,818 million).
- ICA Gruppen’s Q3 sales increased by 7.6 percent to SEK 34,533 million (32,094), driven by high inflation.
- High inflation and rising energy costs are creating major challenges in all areas.
- Pressured margins especially in the grocery retail operations as a result of lower volumes and higher costs. ICA Sweden’s margin for Q3 decreased to 4.7 percent (5.2 percent).
- Halving of earnings and considerably lower margin for Rimi Baltic as a result of extreme levels of inflation and energy costs.
- Apotek Hjärtat growing faster than the market, but with lower earnings and margin.
- Increase in revenue and earnings for ICA Bank, including ICA Insurance.
- Stable quarter for ICA Real Estate, with improved sales and earnings.
- Earnings include SEK 300 million in capital gains on sales of properties in Sweden.
Chief Executive’s Summary
Per Strömberg: «From our side at ICA we need to work hard together with the ICA retailers to enable price value and competitive offerings to our customers to help make life easier in a tougher situation. The work with this is ongoing, but we have stepped up the pace considerably. This goes for how we will conduct promotional campaigns as well as focus on our private label products. Our “Stammis” loyalty programme in Sweden has over five million members, and with this as a foundation we have unique opportunities to also present broad offerings across businesses and channels. The importance of this is extra clear given the outcome for the third quarter, when we had narrower margins for our grocery retail business and unsatisfactory sales growth.»