Massmart says it lost out on R2.3bn in liquor sales in April and May

Game is a subsidiary of Massmart. Picture: FINANCIAL MAIL
Game is a subsidiary of Massmart. Picture: FINANCIAL MAIL

Retailer Massmart, whose brands include Makro and Game, says SA’s Covid-19 lockdown resulted in about R2.3bn in lost liquor sales in April and May.

This is based on comparable sales in 2019, the group said, as it warned the pandemic had worsened losses this year, though pent-up demand had helped sales as SA’s lockdown has eased from level 5.

The group said in a trading update that it expected its headline loss per share for the 26 weeks to end-June 28 to be at least 50% worse than the headline loss per share of 364.7c previously.

Total sales for the 23 weeks to June 7 2020 amounted to R34.8bn, which is 10.3% lower year on year. Sales from its SA stores amounted to R31.3bn, 11.5% lower than last year.

The group said operating costs in line with higher safety protocols amounted to about R50m, but that it was comfortable with its balance sheet, and had secured a R4bn intercompany loan from parent Walmart.

The retailer is implementing an organisational shake-up that has seen its four divisions reorganised into two business units. It said , saying on Wednesday it was continuing this plan.

Massmart Retail will comprise the Builders, Game, DionWired and Cambridge Food trading brands.

Massmart Wholesale will take in Makro, Shield and the group’s wholesale cash brands.

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