Costcutter reports one of its strongest years to date

Costcutter Supermarkets Group (CSG) has reported one of its best set of financial results to date, with sales increasing by 10% to £426m for the period Jan 1st to Dec 31st 2019.

The symbol group has also seen EBITDA increase by over £9M to +£5.1M. Following accelerated investment in key strategic areas, CSG has delivered growth for both its retailers and the overall group.

CEO Darcy Willson-Rymer, (pictured), said, “2019 has been an outstanding year for CSG, delivering one of our strongest set of results to date. Having built a solid foundation in 2018, we were able to realise the potential of our business model to deliver growth throughout 2019.

“Our ability to create innovative solutions that help our independent retailers put their shoppers first and grow their business, has been pivotal to our success story in 2019. Over the past 12 months we have accelerated our investments in our overall retail offer and the guidance and support we provide for our retailers.”

The surge in demand by shoppers through the COVID-19 crisis drove a +22% increase in non-tobacco sales across the first four months of 2020. The ability to serve shoppers’ needs for a full shop, especially with the breadth and depth of CSG’s fresh range, proved vital and maintained shopper loyalty among old and new shoppers alike.'

Willson-Rymer continued, “In just two months, the coronavirus crisis has transformed the value of the convenience sector for shoppers and local communities. Our retailers’ stores provided an essential role in providing lifeline support for their communities and keeping the nation fed.

'As a result, we expect sales to remain higher than usual for the time-being. However, as the lockdown eases, demand may begin to slowly return to normal levels and that is when we will accelerate elements of our 2020 plans to help our independent retailers convert these new lifeline shoppers into lifelong shoppers.

“We will do this through both the Shopper First programme and its proven ability to help participating stores focus on the right range and offer with an emphasis on fresh foods, and by helping retailers become even closer to local communities through an increased focus on digital experience and platforms such as Uber Eats.”

Willson-Rymer went on, 'Looking ahead, CSG’s vision is to be the best loved and most shopped symbol group in the UK.

“With new shoppers frequenting our stores there has never been a better time to fulfil our vision to be the best loved and most shopped symbol group in the UK. By continuing to focus on bringing communities together to make their lives easier and more prosperous, we can build on the success we have achieved in 2019 and fulfil our purpose of helping independent retailers thrive.'

Willson-Rymer ended, “Last year we said that we are challenging what Symbol Groups can deliver and we believe that 2019 proved our ability to fulfil that promise. Despite the external challenges that lie ahead, the opportunity to help grow independent retailers businesses has never been greater.”