Overview of the financial year 2012 and forecast

Sales of METRO GROUP rose by 1.2 percent. EBIT before special items totalled €1,976 million (previous year: €2,372 million).

Earnings position

  • Sales of METRO GROUP increased by 1.2 percent to €66.7 billion in 2012 (in local currencies: +0.8 percent)
  • International sales rose by 1.6 percent (in local currencies: +0.8 percent)
  • Sales in Germany increased by 0.6 percent
  • Group EBIT before special items reached €2.0 billion (pre­vious year: €2.4 billion)
  • Profit for the period totalled €101 million (previous year: €741 million) and included special items totalling €615 million (previous year: €238 million)
  • Earnings per share before special items amounted to €1.89 compared with €2.63 in the previous year

Financial and asset position

  • Investments declined by €0.7 billion to €1.4 billion
  • Net debt decreased by €0.8 billion to €3.2 billion
  • Long-term rating of BBB– (Standard & Poor’s) and Baa3 (Moody’s)
  • Cash flow from continuing operations increased by €0.2 billion to €2.3 billion
  • Total assets amounted to €34.8 billion, an increase of €0.8 billion compared with the previous year
  • At €6.1 billion, equity was 5.2 percent lower than in the previous year; the equity ratio decreased by 1.4 percentage points to 17.5 percent

Forecast of METRO GROUP

Sales

In spite of persistently difficult business conditions, we expect to generate moderate growth in sales (adjusted for portfolio changes) in the short financial year 2013. In the subsequent financial year 2013/14, we expect to see this moderate growth in sales continue compared with the respective period for the previous year. These projections are based on the assumption of virtually unchanged exchange rates.

Earnings

In the short financial year 2013, earnings trends will be affected by continued economic uncertainties. As a result, we will continue to intensely focus on efficient structures and strict cost controls in 2013 and the following years.

In the short financial year 2013, we expect EBIT before special items to be slightly higher than in the respective period of the previous year (€704 million). This forecast is based on the assumption of higher income from the sale of real estate assets compared to last year’s period. Due partly to the lack of major sports events, we expect the Group’s operative performance to slightly lag that of the first 9 months of 2012.

Barring a sustained deterioration of the economic environment, we project an increase in EBIT before special items for the financial year 2013/14 compared with the respective period of the previous year.