February 9, 2018 / 10:47 AM / 7 months ago

UPDATE 1-Germany's Ceconomy to stick with Black Friday despite Q1 hit -CEO

* CEO says Black Friday offers should not just be cheap

* Says should offer more services with Black Friday sales

* Sticks with FY guidance

* Shares slide to bottom of MDAX (Recasts with CEO comments, adds analyst comment, share price)

FRANKFURT, Feb 9 (Reuters) - Ceconomy says it will stick with Black Friday this year even after the effects of the sale contributed to a 16 percent fall in first-quarter operating profit at the German consumer electronics retailer.

“Black Friday has taken over all of Europe, and not taking part is not an alternative,” CEO Pieter Haas told journalists on a conference call. “That would be like saying we’re not doing Christmas or Easter.”

The operator of Media Markt stores, which split from German retail conglomerate Metro last July, said earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) fell to 258 million euros ($316.44 million).

Sales adjusted for currency and portfolio changes rose 1.3 percent to 6.94 billion euros helped by growth in Spain and Turkey and a stabilised performance in Italy, it said.

Haas said it would keep offering Black Friday promotions even after the spending spree imported from the United States saw many consumers buy Christmas gifts at deep discounts, dragging forward sales.

“We have to learn to do (Black Friday) more intelligently, having more bundled offers so we are offering something unique and not just something cheap,” Haas said.

Ceconomy has been expanding services such as repairs, installation and home delivery, which accounted for 5.9 percent of sales.

Ceconomy kept its forecast for at least medium single-digit percentage growth in annual operating profit and a slight increase on sales of 22.16 billion euros last year.

“Given that the first quarter is the most seasonally important quarter of the year, and it was so weak, we find it slightly surprising that management still feels able to commit to this target,” Morgan Stanley analysts said.

Ceconomy shares were down 1.56 percent at 11.04 euros at 1017 GMT lagging a German blue-chip DAX index off 0.4 percent.

$1 = 0.8153 euros Reporting by Maria Sheahan; editing by Edward Taylor and Jason Neely

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