Makro and Game owner Massmart loses R6bn in sales due to pandemic

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Walmart-owned Massmart said the retailer lost R6 billion in total sales due to Covid-19 restrictions, including on liquor.

It also expects expects its net loss to widen by 30.9% to 35.9% from R1.3bn in 2019.

The group said in an update to shareholders on Friday that said some of the effects of Covid-19 were mitigated by rental relief from landlords, and benefits from government's wage-relief scheme.

Massmart reported that group sales decreased by 7.7% to R86.5 billion for the 52 weeks ended December 27 2020.

Massmart - which owns Game, Makro and Builders Warehouse - announced that it was closing tech chain DionWired and 11 Masscash stores in January 2020.

Masscash targets lower- to middle-income consumers, and its stores include Jumbo Cash and Carry, Trident and Shield and Cambridge Food under its retail division.

Fin24 reported earlier that the merger approved by the Competition Tribunal between Devland and Masscash will save 640 jobs.

Massmart has however only managed to sell eight Masscash stores and the group said the potential sale of the remaining three stores is still being contemplated.

It has taken the decision to divest in an additional 14 Masscash stores in an aim to optimise the group store portfolio.

The group incurred retrenchment costs of R132 million related to the closure of DionWired, the closure of Masscash stores, and the reorganisation of the Game store-level operating model.

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