SEOUL, May 13 (Korea Bizwire) — E-Mart Inc., South Korea’s largest discount store chain by sales, on Thursday said its net profit more than doubled in the first quarter from a year earlier, largely helped by a rebound in offline sales.
The retail giant’s net profit for the January-March period came to 102.1 billion won (US$90.3 million), up 129.4 percent from a year earlier, according to the corporate regulatory filing.
Sales rose 13.1 percent to 5.89 trillion won on-year, and its operating profit surged 154.4 percent to 123.2 billion won.
“Amid the retail industry’s fast transition to online, E-Mart’s operating profit exceeded the 100 billion-won mark for the first time in three years, thanks to its balanced growth in the offline and online operations,” E-Mart said in a statement.
E-Mart said the earnings hike was led by improved performance at offline outlets and Traders, the warehouse club-style outlet of E-mart.
“The company’s efforts to raise the competitiveness of its offline stores seem to have paid off, with the existing stores having expanded by 7.9 percent on average,” the company said in a statement.
The first-quarter turnaround also came as the company’s key subsidiaries, such as online mall SSG.com and convenience store chain E-Mart 24, delivered decent performances.