Press release

4/20/2017 7:00 AM (R)

Good growth and stable profitability

President and CEO Klas Balkow’s comments on the first quarter:
Axfood showed good growth in an otherwise soft market. With sales growth of more than 3%, Axfood gained additional market shares during the first quarter. All concepts continued to grow and showed stable profitability.     
    
During the quarter we increased our e-commerce initiatives. The integration of mat.se is being carried out with full strength, and more customers can shop online from Willys and Hemköp. This gives us favourable conditions to strengthen our position in the rapidly growing online segment.

First quarter summary

  •  Consolidated net sales amounted to SEK 10,639 m (10,305), an increase of 3.2%.
  •  Operating profit was SEK 397 m (408), corresponding to an operating margin of 3.7% (4.0%).
  •  Net profit for the period was SEK 309 m (316), and earnings per share were SEK 1.47 (1.51).
  •  Klas Balkow took office as President and CEO on 16 March.
  •  Axfood completed the offer to acquire all of the shares in Matse Holding AB on 31 January. Axfood’s holding as per 31 March was more than 99% of the shares.
  •  The Swedish Competition Authority approved the acquisition of Eurocash Food AB, and the company is thereby consolidated in the Axfood Group as from 1 April 2017. Approval from the EU Competition Authority is still pending for Norgesgruppen’s share of the acquisition (49%).
  •  Axfood is focusing on growth and new investments, and the forecast is an operating profit in 2017 that is level with the outcome for 2016.

Significant events after the balance sheet date

  •  Axfood’s board of directors has decided to carry out share repurchases of a maximum of 200,000 shares coupled to the long-term share-based incentive programme. Repurchases can take place starting on 15 May. Axfood currently has no holdings of treasury shares.  

Welcome to today’s presentation where President and CEO Klas Balkow together with Acting CFO Anders Lexmon present the first quarter 2017. The presentation will be held at Hemköp’s “Rekobutik”, Norra Stationsgatan 80 A, at 9 a.m. The presentation can also be followed via axfood.se or monitored by phone:
Sweden: +46 8 566 426 66
Great Britain: +44 203 0089 804
USA: +1 855 8315 945.

For further information, please contact:
Cecilia Ketels, Head of Investor Relations, Axfood AB, tel +46 72 23 606 43

The information herein is such that Axfood AB (publ) is required to make public in accordance with the EU Market Abuse Regulation and the Swedish Securities Market Act. The information was submitted for publication, through the agency of the contact person listed above, at 7 a.m. CET on 20 April 2017.

At Axfood we work with passion for food and people. Our strength is in developing and driving successful grocery formats in the Swedish market with responsibility for the environment and sustainable development. Axfood includes the Willys and Hemköp chains as well as the Tempo, Handlar’n and Direkten formats, which are proprietor-owned and organized within Axfood Närlivs. B2B sales are sold through the Axfood Snabbgross chain, and wholesaling is conducted through Dagab. Axfood is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm, and the principal owner is Axel Johnson AB. Read more at axfood.se (http://www.axfood.se/).

 

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