METRO Cash & Carry: sector development in the cash-and-carry business

In terms of sales, METRO Cash & Carry is the global market leader in self-service wholesale. Although the sales line closed its operations in Egypt during the reporting period as part of the continual strategic portfolio optimisation process, its presence in 28 countries undisputedly gives it the highest degree of internationalisation worldwide.

In Germany, sales generated by the self-service wholesale trade during financial year 2013/14 remained at approximately the same level seen in the comparable prior-year period. The cash-and-carry segment performed slightly worse than food retailing as a whole, which was above the previous year’s level. Increases in food prices are slowing, causing the positive momentum created by such trends for sector development to subside. METRO Cash & Carry remains the leader in the self-service wholesale trade in Germany. Its market share remained relatively unchanged in financial year 2013/14.

Sales in self-service wholesale trade in Western Europe decreased slightly during the reporting period. However, this decline was smaller than the decrease recorded in the previous year. Deflationary tendencies are also evident here in many cases, in particular in food prices. Development in the cash-and-carry segment in the individual countries was varied again. The crisis countries in the eurozone enjoyed a modest recovery in financial year 2013/14. The sales decline in self-service wholesale trade in Portugal and Spain, for example, lessened in comparison to the same period of the previous year.

In Eastern Europe, sales generated by self-service wholesale trade in local currency increased once again in financial year 2013/14. Overall, development in the region is very non-uniform due to the different economic conditions. Sales continue to grow in Poland and Turkey. In Ukraine, business has been hurt by the worsening political situation between Russia and Ukraine. Economic sanctions imposed against Russia are causing food prices to rise sharply. In conjunction with the slowdown in economic growth, the final quarter provided indicators for changes in food shopping behaviour. As a whole, however, sales in Russia continue to develop positively.

In Asia, growth in self-service wholesale trade continued in financial year 2013/14. With its expansion in the region, METRO Cash & Carry was once again the growth driver in the sector and increased its market share in the reporting period. China and India are the main focal points of METRO Cash & Carry’s strategic expansion. Thanks to the continued low market concentration found in many countries and the higher number of small, traditional retailers, the region continues to exhibit tremendous growth potential. In India, METRO Cash & Carry has little international competition due to the existing restrictions on foreign retailing activities on the Indian market.