Tesco Thailand sales and profit fall in first half

Falling sales by Tesco Thailand impacted the UK parent company’s first half results released overnight.

Like-for-like sales across Asia – which also includes the neighbouring Malaysia stores – fell by 4.8 per cent, explained by the company’s decision to exit its unprofitable Tesco Thailand cash-and-carry business.

But the company’s profit in Asia fell by 29.1 per cent.

Despite the disappointing numbers, Tesco CEO David Lewis moved to reassure investors that tesco Thailand was still an important focus.

“In Thailand we’re market leader, it’s still the most profitable part of the group and there’s still significant growth to be had,” he said.

Tesco reported an operating profit before one-off items of £933 million, which has 24 per cent ahead of the same time last year, but missed analyst expectations of £978 million.

“I don’t think the market had fully factored in the Asian [business] but we’re really encouraged by the UK,” said Tesco CFO Alan Stewart.

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