SuperValu owner sees profits rise to €80m
Retail and wholesale group Musgrave made a pretax profit of €80m in the year to December 30, on sales of €3.7bn.
Profits were up 9pc on 2016 and the business was sitting on net cash of €71m at year end, and net assets of €330m.
The accounts show Musgrave’s SuperValu brand, which is now the biggest grocery chain in the Republic, recorded sales of €2.7bn - a record for the brand.
Centra recorded sales of €1.58bn in 2017 in the year.
"We have delivered a strong financial performance, reporting a third consecutive year of profit growth with sales also performing well despite on-going food deflation," Group CEO Chris Martin said.
"Our brands enabled local community retailers to go head-to-head with the multiple chains in a highly competitive market. These family businesses are benefiting from their partnership with us and our financial strength enables us to support them into the future. This financial strength also means we can continue to explore opportunities through acquisitions, exports and by developing new brands."
He said the group, which withdrew from the UK in recent year, is now mainly focused on the Irish food market, which is worth €30bn a year and is the fastest growing in Europe.
As well as its main retail and wholesale brands, it launched the Frank & Honest coffee bar brand last year which is now the biggest coffee outlet in the Irish market, Mr Martin said.
A new Chipmongers brand for independent fish and chip shops is being rolled out and is expected to be in 30 outlets this year.
It works like Centra, as a brand that can be shared by independent outlets to maximize impact and economies of scale.