Empire reports third-quarter sales and profit up from year ago

Same-store sales fell in the quarter and Sobeys parent company says it expects they will continue to fall
Exterior shot of a Sobeys store

Empire Company Ltd. reported a quarterly profit of $203.4 million, up from $176.3 million a year earlier, as its sales also climbed higher.

Sobeys parent company says the profit in what was its third quarter amounted to 77 cents per diluted share, up from 66 cents per diluted share a year earlier.

Sales in the 13-week period ended Jan. 29 totalled $7.38 billion, up from $7.02 billion, helped by the acquisition of Longo's, higher fuel sales and increased food inflation as well as other initiatives.

Same-store sales excluding fuel fell 1.7% compared with elevated sales last year.

In its outlook, Empire says it expects that same-store sales will continue to be negative for the remainder of its 2022 financial year as industry volumes fall compared with the unusually high COVID-19 driven sales levels a year ago.

It also says it is experiencing supply chain challenges primarily related to labour shortages caused by COVID-19 and inflationary pressures, particularly related to cost of goods sold.

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