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Woolworths Group profit plunges despite panic buying at supermarkets

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

Soaring supermarket sales were not enough to offset the shutdown of the groups pubs and hospitality businesses.

Woolworths Group's net profit after tax has fallen more than 20 per cent despite soaring sales at its supermarkets as COVID-19 restrictions shut down the group's pubs and hospitality arm.

Announcing its results to shareholders this morning, Woolworths said its net profit from continuing operations attributable to equity holders was down 21.8 per cent on the year prior to $1.16 billion.

Despite this, the business says a period of "pantry loading" – business-speak for panic buying – saw group sales increase 8.1 per cent to a huge $63.7 billion.

READ MORE: Woolworths appoints first-ever chief medical officer to guide supermarket through pandemic

Online sales, which encompass the Group's retail chain Big W, grew 41.8 per cent to $3.5 billion.

CEO Brad Banducci said the group has suffered a number of challenges during the financial year and praised his team for their resilience.

"At our half-year results in February, we spoke about the many challenges the communities we operate in had faced including drought, bushfires, the White Island tragedy in New Zealand and unrest in Hong Kong," Mr Banducci said.

READ MORE: Why Australians in remote areas are paying 90 per cent more for food

A staff member wipes down the checkout area at Woolworths in Marrickville Metro, where a man who has since tested positive to COVID-19 visited.

"At the time, no one could have imagined how the rest of the year would unfold with the devastating impact of COVID-19.

"Our main priority for F21 is making COVIDSafe a part of everything we do."

The Woolworths Group declared a fully-franked final dividend of 48 cents per share, bringing the full-year dividend to 94 cents per share.

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Source: 9News https://www.9news.com.au/national/woolworths-group-fy20-results-net-profit-falls-despite-panic-buying-at-supermarkets/a34878d4-7128-4a67-ad69-b90125eea8c8

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Finance Advice 2021