Earnings

Albertsons’ Online Sales Surge 276 Pct Amid Pandemic

Albertsons’ Online Sales Surge 276 Pct

Digital commerce has skyrocketed at Albertsons, as the supermarket giant posted a triple-digit increase in online sales for its most recent quarter amid soaring demand for grocery delivery and curbside pickup.

Albertsons reported a 276 percent jump in digital sales during its fiscal first quarter ending June 20, as the pandemic pushed shoppers online.

The Idaho-based supermarket chain reported overall sales and revenue of $22.8 billion for the first quarter, up 21.4 percent over the same period last year, when Albertsons reported revenue of $18.7 billion.

Profits have also surged. Albertsons reported an adjusted EBITDA of $1.7 billion, a 93 percent rise over the same period last year. Net income rang in at $586 million for the quarter, with adjusted net income per share of $1.35, compared to eight cents during the same quarter in 2019.

Vivek Sankaran, Albertsons’ president and CEO, noted in a statement that the company’s big jump in digital sales came as the chain has “accelerated” its “digital and eCommerce strategy.”

The increase in online sales also helped offset declines from the closure of some stores and a drop in fuel sales.

“We have accelerated our digital and eCommerce strategy to adapt to market conditions. We generated strong financial performance in the first quarter, including robust cash flow and enhanced liquidity, which support our continued investment to benefit our associates, customers, communities and stockholders,” the statement continued.

Still, Albertsons saw expenses rise as well during the quarter, with the supermarket chain spending $615 million on personal protective equipment (PPE) and other expenses related to COVID-19, including $275 million in extra pay and $53 million in hunger relief efforts in the various local communities where the company does business.

Albertsons also reported nearly $15 million in “civil disruption-related costs.” While not citing any specific incidents, the company’s Vons and Safeway stores in New York, San Diego and Los Angeles were all hit by looters over the past few months, according to news reports.

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