Morrisons profits impacted by Covid costs
The Morrisons supermarket chain has reported a drop in first half profit after it was hit by £155 million worth of costs relating to Covid-19 pandemic.
In the six months to 2 August, pre-tax profit before exceptionals fell by 25.3% to £148 million, although group like-for-like sales excluding fuel rose by 8.7%.
The retailer said it incurred increased costs for payroll, bonuses and Covid-19 safety protection measures and was also impacted by a rise in distribution costs and seasonal waste and markdowns. However, the costs were partly offset by £93 million in business rates relief.
Meanwhile, total revenue dropped by 1.1% to £8.73 billion in the period due to very low demand for fuel during and after lockdown. When fuel sales were excluded, total sales increased by 8.8% to £7.55 billion.
David Potts, Morrisons chief executive, said: “From the start of the pandemic we stepped up and put the company’s assets at the disposal of the country to help feed the nation. Morrisons is at the heart of local communities and responded quickly when it mattered most, and we are very grateful for the British public’s appreciation of all the vital work our colleagues are doing. I believe we are seeing the renaissance of British supermarkets.
“We are now looking forward to holding on to what we created in the first half, building on our colleagues’ inspiration and innovation, and sustaining the momentum of a broader, stronger Morrisons. I’d like to again thank every Morrisons colleague for their incredible efforts: you’ve earned your key worker status several times over.”
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