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Metro sales up as shoppers started stocking up amid COVID-19

Quebec grocer says food same-store sales were up 9.7% in the second quarter

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan RemiorzTHE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

Metro Inc. reported its second-quarter profit rose from a year ago and sales climbed as shoppers began stocking up due to the pandemic during the last two weeks of the period.

The grocery and drug store company says it earned $176.2 million for the 12-week period ended March 14 compared with a profit of $121.5 million in the same quarter a year earlier.

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Sales for the quarter totalled $3.99 billion, up from $3.70 billion a year earlier. Food same-store sales were up 9.7% for the quarter, while pharmacy same-store sales were up 7.9%.

Excluding the COVID-19 impact, Metro says food same-store sales were up 5.2% and pharmacy same-store sales were up 6.4%.

In its outlook, Metro says food same-store sales during the first four-weeks of its third quarter were up 25% compared with a year ago.

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On an adjusted basis, Metro says it earned $182.8 million for its second quarter, up from an adjusted profit of $155.1 million a year ago.

“The crisis related to COVID-19 is unprecedented and has solicited all our resources to ensure the safety of our employees and customers, the resilience of our supply chain and our ability to maintain store operations,” Metro chief executive Eric La Fleche said in a statement.

“We do not know how long this crisis will last but we will continue to serve our customers as best as we can, making the health and safety of our teams and customers our top priority.”

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