Although the company was able to report its sales and earnings were within guidance expectations in the first half of its financial year, Metro has updated its guidance for its 2020/21 financial year. The decision to update its guidance came as restrictions implemented as a result of COVID-19 continued to be implemented and impact on its performance.
On-going restrictions impacting on performance…
Metro said ‘the continuous prolongation and a high volatility of regulatory measures related to COVID-19 meant it had to update its guidance. The company said the restrictions ‘continue to significantly restrict public life in many of the Metro countries, with openings now not expected before June, when it had previously expected them to being in April. The on-going restrictions had led to total sales in local currency terms falling 11.5%, while its EBITDA had seen a decline of €120m.
…But hope for the future, following re-openings
Metro said it was basing its new forecasts on the assumption that the hospitality industry in many of its markets would be able to re-open between June and August. Its positive outlook for the latter parts of its financial year was based on the evidence it had seen in countries ‘where hospitality businesses have been reopened partially or in full’.
As a result of its changed outlook it now expects like-for-like sales to decline by approximately -3% to -6%, while its EBITDA will decline by roughly €50m to €175m. By region, Metro said it expected Western Europe to see the strongest impact from on-going restrictions, while Russia and Asia are likely ‘to perform better than the group’.
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