Channel Islands Co-op lifts annual trading profit to £9m

‘I am confident that, as those that came before have done, we will work through the challenges the year ahead will bring’

Channel Islands Co-op, the independent retailer based on Jersey and Guernsey, has announced a trading profit of £9.036m for the year to 12 January (previous year: 8.796m).

Turnover was £184.5m (previous year: £181.2m) and gross profit was £54.2m (previous year: £53.8m).

Writing in the annual report, acting CEO Mark Cox told members: “Our core food and fuel businesses enjoyed exceptionally strong performance with sales +3.88% up on the previous period.”

Factors contributing to the increase include the society’s newly developed site at Charing Cross in Jersey, which enjoyed a strong first year of food trading but benefited from the lease income from the Premier Inn Hotel.

However, the society is planning to dispose of its Medical Care business which continues to run at a loss.

“We announced in February that we had taken the difficult decision to explore options for the future of our medical services business,” said Mr Cox. “Unfortunately, we have been unable to grow and develop the business in the way we had originally planned.

“This decision was not reached lightly and despite having paused plans due to the impact of Covid-19, we will continue to explore options for the future of the business which will see Medical Care transfer from our ownership once we are through this crisis.”

The society also had to make two noteworthy adjustments to the accounts “which will see us report a loss for the financial period”, said Mr Cox. A revaluation of its investments properties has resulted in a revaluation loss of £1.2m.

“The second adjustment has seen us increase the provision for the
onerous lease on the vacant warehouse at Longue Hougue in Guernsey. The increase in provision of £4.7m is an accounting adjustment rather than a cash loss and this provision will reduce annually over the remaining nine years of the lease.”

The society celebrated its centenary last year with donations totalling to good causes across the islands and the planting of 100 trees and hedgerow shrubs on each island. Channel Islands.

Related: Channel Islands Co-operative celebrates 100 years milestone

Donations to community and charity projects totalled nearly £190,000; the society is also continuing its efforts to support local producers with a wide range of produce in stock.

Mr Cox warned that the Covid-19 pandemic will affect the society’s ability to to maintain normal operations through the year. He thanked colleagues and members for their co-operations during the crisis and highlighted the measures, such as social distancing and home working, that had been adopted.

“These changes and other impacts such as the higher levels of absence and need the for temporary resource will come at an increased cost for the society in the year ahead. The outlook remains challenging – however it is only right that we, as a co-operative member-owned organisation, put purpose before profit and play our part in looking after colleagues, members and the wider community. ”

He added: “Over the past 100 years the society has faced and conquered
many different challenges … I am confident that, as those that came before have done, we will work through the challenges the year ahead will bring and we will continue to develop and protect long-term member value.