Morrisons profits hit by Covid costs
Morrisons has seen its pre-tax profit before exceptionals fall by 37% to £105 million in the first half of its financial year after the supermarket faced a number of challenges relating to Covid-19 costs and supply chain disruption.
In the six months to 1 August, total revenue rose by 3.7% to £9.05 billion. However, like-for-like sales excluding fuel edged down 0.3% in the period, but were up 8.4% when measured against the same time in 2019 before the pandemic struck.
Meanwhile, statutory pre-tax profit was 43.4% down at £82 million.
Andrew Higginson, Morrisons chairman, said: “Across the business the whole Morrisons team has shown commendable resilience facing into a variety of continuing challenges during the first half, including the ongoing pandemic, disruption at some of our partner suppliers, and the impact on our supply chain of HGV driver shortages. As we approach our busiest time of year, I’m confident the team will continue to rise to all challenges and keep up all the good work to improve the shopping trip for customers.”
During the half year, Morrisons accelerated the roll out of the Morrisons Daily shops with the McColl’s convenience chain. The companies are now aiming to have 350 McColl’s store conversions completed by November 2022, which is up from the original target of 300 by the end of 2023.
In addition, the Morrisons on Amazon’ offering has now been expanded to over 60 towns and cities to cover 60% of the UK population.
The supermarket now expects second half profit to be higher than the previous six months due to minimal direct Covid-19 costs, which amounted to £41 million in the first half. Morrisons also suffered £80 million worth of lost profit in cafés, fuel and food-to-go during Covid-19 lockdowns.
David Potts, Morrisons chief executive, said: “I want to thank all Morrisons colleagues for their unswerving dedication and commitment during the long pandemic period. Their innovation, enterprise, hard work and boundless compassion have shone through, and a new Morrisons is taking shape.”
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