BERLIN — Negative-currency effects in much of Eastern Europe and portfolio changes related to the disposal of the Real Eastern Europe supermarket business pushed Metro Group’s sales down 2.2 percent in the first quarter of fiscal 2014-’15.
In preliminary figures released Tuesday, Metro reported sales of 18.2 billion euros, or $24.19 billion, for the three months ending Dec. 31, 2014.
Dollar figures are converted at average exchange for the period to which they refer.
Like-for-like sales increased 2.1 percent in the period, the German cash and carry, department store, hypermarket and electronics retail group pointed out.
Metro chairman Olaf Koch said: “Christmas business was overall positive. In December, all sales divisions increased their like-for-like sales.”
However, December’s performance could not compensate for warm weather and a weak fall start at the group’s Galeria Kaufhof department store division, where like-for-like sales declined 1.4 percent to 1 billion euros, or $1.3 billion. Reported sales were down 1 percent, Metro said.
At the group’s core Metro Cash & Carry, sales were down 3.6 percent to 8.2 billion, or $10.9 billion, while like-for-like sales rose 1.4 percent in the quarter. Metro noted increases in Asia and Eastern Europe, with Russia generating double-digit like-for-like sales growth, while reported sales declined due to negative-currency effects.
Metro did not release profit figures, but Koch said that given the positive development of the like-for-like sales performance in the period, the group has a solid basis “for achieving our full-year sales outlook.”