The Channel logo

News

By | Brid-Aine Parnell 7th December 2011 12:33

Current Comet owner hit with half year loss

Kesa looks forward to offloading ailing retailer

Kesa Electricals, the for-the-moment owner of UK retailer Comet, has announced a loss for the first six months of the fiscal year, as consumer appetite for big electronics flags.

The group made a loss before tax of €147.7m in the six months to the end of October this year, compared to a profit of €27.2m in the same period of 2010.

At the end of last month, Kesa said it was planning to sell off Comet for just £2 to a private equity group. The sale is expected to be completed by the start of February next year.

The company had exceptional charges in the period of €133.6m, €109.9m of which was attributed to impairment of assets at Comet.

Comet also made an operating loss for the company in the six months to October of €6.4m.

“Market conditions are becoming more challenging across all our markets,” said David Newlands, chairman of Kesa, in the statement announcing the results.

“I am pleased therefore that we have reached agreement for the disposal of Comet, subject to shareholder approval. The disposal is expected to improve significantly the Group's financial strength and enables us to maintain an interim dividend of 2.25 cents per share.”

Despite the poor results, the group said it was “well prepared for the peak season”, although it added that it was adjusting its costs “in the face of the ongoing tough market conditions”.

Kesa is offloading Comet to private equity firms Hailey Holdings and Hailey Acquistions. ®

comment icon Read 10 comments on this article alert Send corrections

Opinion

Chris Mellor

VC sequence could end not with a bang, but a whimper
Sad man stares glumly over boxed contents of desk. Image via shutterstock (Baranq)

Chris Mellor

All that is storage does not beget gold
Lost

Features

Funnel of cash. Credit: via SXC – http://www.sxc.hu/profile/Leonardini
You see a diversity tickbox nightmare, I see human beings
hands waving dollar bills in the air
AWS and Salesforce match up to Ellison's hardware