SOK Corporation: Financial statements bulletin 2023

Helsinki / FI. (sok) S Group’s operating result in 2023 was EUR 447 million (S Group means SOK Corporation » Suomen Osuuskauppojen Keskuskunta » SOK). The result improved by 37.5 percent from the previous year. The development was based on strong growth in the numbers of customers and strong sales across the board. The development of sales in grocery trade was stronger than in the rest of the market for the whole year. The success was reflected in significant investments in Finland and cash benefits to co-op members, which were paid for a record-breaking total of more than half a billion euro.

Key figures in January to December 2023

Regional cooperatives + SOK Corporation 01-12/2023:
  • Retail sales before taxes totalled EUR 14,208 million (13,465 million in the previous year).
  • Operating result (FAS) was EUR 447 million (325 million).
  • Investments totalled EUR 667 million (557 million).
  • The total number of co-op members at the end of the year was 2,577,010 (2,512,159).
  • Cooperatives paid a total of EUR 449 million (414 million) in Bonus to co-op members.
  • An average amount of 205 euros was paid to co-op members during the year, including Bonus, payment method benefit, return of surplus and interest on the membership fee.
  • The number of personnel was 41,413 (40,875) at the end of the year. This figure is based on active employment relationships. (Includes regional cooperatives, SOK Corporation and S-Bank personnel.)
  • The total number of outlets at the end of the year was 2,007 (1,984).
SOK Corporation (SOK + subsidiaries), 01-12/2023:
  • Net sales (IFRS) stood at EUR 9,022 million (8,434 million in the previous year).
  • Operating result (IFRS) was EUR 102 million (25 million).
  • Investments totalled EUR 52 million (81 million).
  • The number of personnel was 5,999 (5,686) at the end of the year. This figure is based on active employment relationships.

The combined operating result (FAS) of regional cooperatives and the SOK Corporation was EUR 447 million in 2023, with an increase of EUR 122 million from the previous year. Retail sales excluding taxes increased by 5.5 percent from the previous year and stood at EUR 14.2 billion. Co-op members accrued Bonus and other cash benefits more than ever before, for a total of EUR 529 million. The overall amount of Bonus also reached a record level of EUR 449 million.

SOK Corporation’s operating result (IFRS) was EUR 102 million. This showed an improvement of EUR 77 million from the previous year, based especially on the hotel company Sokotel’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic and S-Bank’s strong development.

Four million S-Etukortti cards issued

The strengths of cooperative business – services that benefit customers and an affordable shopping basket – were emphasised during financially challenging times. An affordable price level benefits all customers. In addition, members’ benefits increase as they use more S Group services. In 2023, S Group first decreased food prices in March for all Xtra products, and the price decreases continued in 09|2023 and 01|2024.

«Keeping our promise on prices, high-quality services and benefits to the owners added to our attraction: More than 110,000 new members joined cooperatives, and four million S-Etukortti cards have already been issued. It was particularly pleasant to see more and more young adults become co-op members. Our success was also reflected in the increased number of visits to our outlets and the improved customer satisfaction,» says Hannu Krook, CEO of SOK.

Development outpacing the market continued in supermarket trade

The sales of S Group’s supermarket trade grew by 7.6 percent from the previous year. The operating result also strengthened from the year before. In the tighter economic situation, some consumers moved to more affordable products and considered their purchasing decisions more carefully. Despite the challenging operating environment, consumer goods trade at Prisma stores performed better than the general market development. The new online store has reached a good level of business and nearly doubled its sales during the second half of the year.

Grocery trade continued its strong performance, with sales developing better than the rest of the Finnish grocery market every month. S Group also strengthened its position as the market leader in the online grocery trade, with the service increasing its sales by 15.8 percent from the previous year. The network already includes more than 300 delivery locations across Finland.

The sales of Meira Nova Oy, S Group’s foodservice company, also developed better than the rest of the industry’s market in 2023. For additional info please read the Cooperative’s PDF file below (136 KB):