Loblaw Companies Ltd. reported its first-quarter profit rose compared with a year ago as shoppers stockpiled supplies due to the pandemic, however it said costs also rose as it ramped up spending to protect its workers and customers.
The company, which owns Loblaws grocery stores and the Shoppers Drug Mart chain, says it earned a profit attributable to common shareholders of $240 million for the 12-week period ended March 21.
That compared with a profit of $198 million in the same quarter last year.
Revenue totalled $11.8 billion, up from nearly $10.7 billion in the first quarter of 2019.
Food retail same-stores sales rose 9.6%, while drug retail same-store sales climbed 10.7% as pharmacy same-store sales rose 10.6% and front store same-store sales gained 10.7%.
On an adjusted basis, Loblaw says it earned $352 million, up from $290 million a year earlier.