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Tesco H1 Profit Declines, Sales Rise; Lifts Dividend; Now Sees FY Profit Towards Lower End Of View

British retailer Tesco plc. (TSCO.L,TSCDY.PK) reported Wednesday that its first-half profit before tax fell 64 percent to 413 million pounds from last year's 1.14 million pounds.

Earnings per share were 3.44 pence, down 68 percent from 10.70 pence a year ago.

Adjusted earnings per share were 10.67 pence, compared to 11.22 pence last year.

Revenue, excluding VAT, and including fuel, grew 6.7 percent to 32.5 billion pounds from prior year's 30.4 billion pounds.

Group sales exc. VAT, exc. Fuel increased 3.1 percent to 28.18 billion pounds from 27.33 billion pounds last year. Group sales grew 3.5 percent at constant currency rates.

Retail LFL sales went up 3.2 percent following strong performance throughout pandemic.

Further, the company announced interim dividend of 3.85 pence, up 20.3 percent from last year, and in line with policy at 35 percent of prior year's full year dividend.

Looking ahead, the company said, "...despite ongoing challenges in the market, we are able to maintain our profit guidance within our previous range, albeit towards the lower end. We therefore expect full year retail adjusted operating profit of between £2.4bn and £2.5bn. Significant uncertainties in the external environment still exist, most notably how consumer behaviour continues to evolve."

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