South African retailer Massmart said on Thursday its sales during the 19 weeks ended 9 May rose by 8% due to the easing of coronavirus-related trading restrictions.
Shoppers stand outside the outlet for Massmart-owned Game Store in Polokwane, Limpopo province, South Africa, 1 June 2019. Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko
Sales for Massmart, majority-owned by Walmart Inc, came in at R30.5bn rand, with comparable store sales up by 8.4%.
Sales during the same period in 2020 were hit as a result of stricter lockdowns from late March to 30 April.
Massmart said while the continued easing of restrictions led to slightly better trading conditions during the 19-week period, sales were still impacted by a ban on liquor trading in January and over the Easter Weekend period in April.
Liquor ban costs R770m
Massmart estimates the impact of restriction on liquor sales to be around R770m compared to a year earlier, saying its Makro and Cash & Carry wholesale and retail businesses were mostly hit.