Carrefour SA reported a sharp increase in net profit for 2012, boosted by the sell-off of underperforming assets.

Carrefour SA, Wal­mart, France, Europe, Latin America, Brazil, Argentina, China, Taiwan, Greece, Marinopoulos, Cyprus, Balkans, Singapore, Cencosud, Aeon, CT Corp.

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Carrefour net jumps

March 25th, 2013

PARIS – Carrefour SA reported a sharp increase in net profit for 2012, boosted by the sell-off of underperforming assets.

The French company, the world’s second-largest retailer after Wal­mart, reported a net profit of 1.2 billion euros ($1.56 billion) for the year. That is a more than threefold increase from the 371 million euro net profit posted in 2011. Net profit from recurring operations were a more modest 113 million euros, but that is still a big improvement from the loss of 1.9 billion euros in 2011.

Carrefour reported that full-year net sales (excluding VAT) increased 0.9% to 76.8 billion euros ($99.84 billion), driven by results in emerging markets.

In France, sales were up 0.5%, with food sales holding up well, the company said.
In Europe, sales decreased by 2.7% at constant exchange rates, reflecting the fact that consumers, particularly in southern Europe, are spending less. Belgium bucked that trend, continuing to record growing sales.

Sales growth in Latin America remained strong, though, increasing by 12.1% at constant exchange rates. Same-store sales were up solidly in Brazil and Argentina, the company said, and commercial margin increased.

Carrefour’s performance in Asia was more modest. Overall, sales in China and Taiwan grew by 0.5% at constant exchange rates. Continued productivity gains did not fully offset the increase in distribution costs linked to expansion and wage inflation in China.
Carrefour’s priorities in 2012 involved refocusing on countries where it holds leading positions and has a multiformat profile.

The company sold its stake in a joint venture in Greece to its partner, Marinopoulos, which became Carrefour’s exclusive franchisee in Greece, Cyprus and the Balkans. Carrefour closed its two stores in Singapore, and sold its Colombian operations to Cencosud for 2 billion euros. The sale of its Malaysian operations to Aeon brought in another 250 million euros, and Carrefour also sold its stake in its Indonesian unit to its partner CT Corp. (which became exclusive franchisee in that country) for 525 million euros.

One of Carrefour’s priorities in the coming year involves the continued development of a “multilocal, multiformat model.”

In France the company plans particular emphasis on improving the offer and price perception, refurbishing stores, and driving multichannel development. In Europe it intends to adapt its offer and costs to reflect the difficult economic environment. In emerging markets, Carrefour plans continued expansion in Latin America and Asia, and new momentum in the development of real estate assets.