For the 52 weeks ended 28 December 2014 Massmart’s total sales of R78.2 billion increased by 10.4% over the prior comparable year. Comparable stores’ sales growth was 7.5% with product inflation of 4.8%. Group EBITDA* of R2.9 billion, before foreign exchange movements, grew by 6.7% while operating profit, excluding foreign exchange movements and interest, grew by 4.3%.
Higher net interest paid from funding several significant property acquisitions in 2013-14 and an adverse movement in foreign exchange translations resulted in headline earnings decreasing by 10.2% while, excluding foreign exchange movements, headline earnings declined by 3.5%.
The South African consumer environment improved towards the latter part of 2014, evidenced by the slightly higher nominal sales growth reported by StatsSA and the Group’s own sales performance. The fourth quarter was particularly strong. In contrast, several African economies weakened or were affected by currency devaluations, causing some profit pressure in our non-South African businesses which represent 8.1% of Group sales.
On behalf of the Board
Chief Executive Officer25 February 2015
Group Finance Director
* Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, amortisation and impairments