McColl’s Retail Group has announced a -91% decline in pre-tax profits in its interim half year results, although like-for-like sales increased by 1.0%

mccoll's store

Over a 26-week period to 26 May, the convenience retailer revealed that profits before tax fell to £200,000 from £2.3m during the same period last year. Total revenue increased by 0.1% to £611.1m.

McColl’s chief executive Jonathan Miller said the retailer’s key priorities for this year were to “stabilise the business and to refocus on retail execution following a challenging 2018”.

McColl’s completed 17 convenience store refreshes, opened three new convenience stores, divested 41 underperforming newsagents and smaller stores and began trials of the Morrisons Daily fascia at 10 refresh stores during the half-year period.

The group said it was also working with Morrisons to refine the Safeway range and to introduce new products to enhance the offer. 

“We have made good progress on both of these fronts whilst also maintaining strong capital discipline, reducing debt whilst sustaining appropriate levels of investment. I am encouraged by the performance we have delivered as we regain greater operational stability, but we still have more work to do in the second half of the year. The market remains highly competitive, with challenging trading conditions, given the unseasonable weather and uncertain economic climate,” Miller added.

“Despite this, we expect to be broadly in line with expectations for the full year and we are confident that our strategy, combined with the cash generative and profitable nature of our business will deliver sustainable returns for shareholders in the long term.”

McColl’s recently announced the appointment of Richard Crampton to the newly-created position of chief commercial officer.