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McColl's swings to profit in first half

Newsagent and convenience chain McColl’s has reported that its pre-tax profit reached £7.6 million in the 26 weeks to 31 May. This compares to a loss of £4 million in the same period in the previous year.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

McColl's swings to profit in first half

Newsagent and convenience chain McColl’s has reported that its pre-tax profit reached £7.6 million in the 26 weeks to 31 May. This compares to a loss of £4 million in the same period in the previous year.

Total revenue increased by 3.4% to £459.3 million while adjusted EBITDA was up 1.9% to £16.2 million.

Like-for-like sales were down 1.9% overall with like-for-like sales in food and wine and premium convenience level with last year. Meanwhile, like-for-like sales in newsagents and standard convenience fell by 4.7%.

McColl’s said sales held up in stores that had been converted to either premium convenience or food and wine formats. During the period, McColl’s acquired 25 new stores and converted 16 newsagents to food & wine format.

The store base at period end comprised 837 convenience stores and 496 newsagents.

McColl’s chief executive James Lancaster said: "I am pleased to report a solid financial performance in what has been a very challenging period for the sector.

"Over the past 12 months we have continued to make good progress on our strategic objectives and focused on improving our range and offer, increasing our store base and streamlining the business."

Looking ahead, Lancaster added: "We are confident that our specialist position as a leading neighbourhood retailer, supported by our continued investment in convenience conversions and the acquisition of new stores, will allow us to take advantage of the market in which we operate. We remain on track to achieve results in line with expectations for the financial year."

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