German retail giant Metro AG on Monday reported a four-percent decline in its yearly sales to 63 billion euros ($80 billion), largely because of a strong euro and divestments.
However the group said it would still meet its pre-tax operating profit of 1.75 billion euros for its 2013-2014 financial year, the full details of which would be given on December 16.
Metro, whose rivals include Wal-Mart and Carrefour, said in a statement its Metro Cash & Carry hypermarkets, its Real supermarkets, and its online retail units Media Markt and Saturn all showed shrinking sales.
But the 19 percent decline reported for the Real unit was in large part because of the sale of its eastern European operations to the French group Auchan, it said.
Cash & Carry, which is heavily invested in Asia, suffered from a 2.1-percent slide because of a currency hit from the strong euro. Without that factor, that unit’s sales would have shown a two-percent increase.
The only unit to show growth was the department store chain Kaufhof, which posted a 0.3-percent increase. Metro has long been looking to sell Kaufhof and has been restructuring it.