The financial performance of BWG, the unlimited group that owns Mace and Spar in Ireland, was revealed yesterday by Spar South Africa (SSA), an 80 per cent shareholder in the Irish company.
SAA told the stock exchange in Johannesburg that BWG, which it co-owns with the Irish business's management team led by Leo Crawford, had sales of up to €1.2 billion in the 12 months to the end of September.
BWG year bought ADM Londis this year to add to its store network that also includes XL and Eurospar. BWG recorded growth of 6.7 per cent including a three-month contribution from Londis, whose 145 stores helped extend its network from 1,150 stores to about 1,330. Without Londis, BWG recorded growth of 2.6 per cent.
BWG made operating profits of 306 million South African Rand (€20 million), according to SSA. The Irish group did not comment. SSA said the performance of its Irish wing, which includes several hundred stores in England, was “a very satisfying result in light of continuing deflation” in the grocery sector.
The €23 million Londis deal gives BWG access to about 50 per cent of the convenience store market, where its main rival is Musgrave’s Centra chain.
SSA also indicated that it plans to ramp up volumes at BWG’s new chilled foods distribution facility in Kilcarbery, west Dublin.
The South African group reported full year sales of 74 billion Rand (€4.9 billion), up a third, mostly due to the first full-year inclusion of BWG.
It invested in BWG in 2014 in a €55 million deal that ultimately wiped €70 million from the Irish group’s debts.