BERLIN May 31 German retailer Metro,
which plans to split into two companies, reported a loss at its
consumer electronics business on Wednesday as it invested
heavily in IT, while its food business was helped by a stronger
Metro changed the way it presents its figures due to a plan
to split off the cash and carry wholesale business along with
Real hypermarkets from consumer electronics group Media-Saturn
by the middle of the year, pending legal challenges.
Metro said the consumer electronics group - to be renamed
Ceconomy - made a loss before interest and taxation before
special items of 19 million euros ($21.23 million) in the
January to March quarter, missing a forecast for a profit of 24
million euros in a Reuters poll of analysts.
Sales at Ceconomy were down 0.5 percent to 5.258 billion
euros, while they rose 2.4 percent to 8.5 billion at the cash
and carry and Real unit, helped by the stronger rouble and
acquisitions including the Pro a Pro group in France.
($1 = 0.8951 euros)
(Reporting by Emma Thomasson; Editing by Edward Taylor)