In a rather exceptional departure from the established norm, Fielmann suffered a dip of 3.1 percent in its consolidated net income during the second quarter ended June 30, down to €29.9 million, in spite of a 4.0 percent increase in consolidated revenues to €279.6 million for the period.

The company attributed this to general market conditions, to the fact that the company's stores were open to the public for two days less than in the same period a year ago and to a 37.3 percent reduction in financial income, due to the reduction in interest rates in Germany and to the appreciation of the Swiss franc. On a same-store basis, sales were still up by about 3 percentage points, and operating profits were largely in line with forecasts, said a spokesman for the company, defining the company's business as still being “very solid” in spite of the economic situation.

Fielmann Consolidated Income Statement

('000 Euros, Second Quarter ended June 30)

 

2012

2011

% Change

REVENUES

278,743

268,032

4.0

Other Income

2,190

3,862

-43.3

Cost of Materials

67,370

65,419

3.0

Personnel Costs

106,960

102,556

4.3

Depreciation

8,630

8,869

-2.7

Other Expenses

56,128

53,150

5.6

Net Interest Income

338

783

-56.8

Pre-Tax

42,183

42,683

-1.2

Income Tax

12,279

11,822

3.9

Minority Interest

(769)

(657)

17.0

NET

29,135

30,204

-3.5

Euro/share

0.69

0.72

-4.2

For the first six months of 2012, Fielmann's net income was up to €63.5 million from €62.5 million in the year-ago period. However, the net profit of its German operations showed a decline of 4.9 percent to €46.6 million. The German retailer's results improved in Austria and Switzerland.

The company's consolidated net sales grew by 5.2 percent to €551.1 million in the first half, with similar growth in external sales to €647.2 million. Fielmann's sales rose in Germany by 4.4 percent to €436.8 million. They went up in Switzerland by 11.7 percent to €69.6 million, and by 4.8 percent in Austria to €30.6 million.

The company pointed out that the growth of the overall retail sector in Germany slowed down to 0.7 percent in real terms during the period, compared with increases of 1.3 percent in the first of 2011 and 0.9 percent in the second half of the year. On the other hand, while the rest of the German optical retail sector suffered a decline of 4 percent in unit sales of glasses, the total number of pairs sold by Fielmann rose by 4.7 percent to 3.5 million. In the second quarter, the number of pairs sold was still up to about 1.8 million from 1.7 million a year earlier.

Fielmann expressed confidence that it will be able to report higher market shares for the whole 2012 financial year, but in contrast with previous practice, the company refrained from making a forecast about its profitability.

As of June, the company operated a total of 665 stores, 10 more than at the same date one year earlier. It employed a total of 14,185 people, compared with 13,655. Of those, 2,525 were trainees, up from the previous year's level of 2,495.