May 29, 2019 / 5:51 AM / 4 months ago

Israeli supermarket chain Shufersal Q1 profit, sales dip

JERUSALEM, May 29 (Reuters) - Shufersal, Israel’s largest supermarket chain, reported lower quarterly profit, weighed down by weaker sales and costs related to the launch of a drugstore chain.

The company said on Wednesday it earned 48 million shekels ($13 million) in the first quarter, compared with 67 million a year earlier. Revenue dipped 0.6 percent to 3.15 billion shekels, while same store sales slipped 3.8 percent due to the timing of the Passover holiday.

Shufersal last year agreed to buy New-Pharm Drugstores, which operates dozens of branches in Israel, for 130 million shekels. It rebranded it under the name “Be” and officially launched it in the fourth quarter.

Be’s revenue gained to 163 million shekels from 140 million but posted a widening of its operating loss to 16 million shekels from 2 million.

Shufersal also recorded financial expenses of 64 million shekels, up from 28 million a year ago, due to implementing new IFRS16 accounting standards.

$1 = 3.6151 shekels Reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Tova Cohen

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