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Empire Completes Project Sunrise; Grows Market Share and Profits

CNW Group - Thu Jun 18, 6:00AM CDT

Fourth Quarter Summary

--  Same-store sales excluding fuel increased by 18.0%
    --  Earnings per share of $0.66 compared to $0.45 last year
    --  Adjusted earnings per share of $0.67 compared to $0.46 last
        year
    --  Project Sunrise exceeds target for fiscal 2020, and 3-year
        target of $500 million
    --  Voil� by Sobeys to begin customer deliveries in June
    --  Annual dividend per share increased 8.3% to $0.52

Empire Company Limited ("Empire" or the "Company") (TSX:EMP-A.TO) today announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and full year ended May 2, 2020. For the quarter, the Company recorded adjusted net earnings of $181.2 million ($0.67 per diluted share) compared to $126.5 million ($0.46 per diluted share) last year, an increase of 43.2%.

"This is one of our proudest quarters in Empire's 113 year history", said Michael Medline, President & CEO, Empire. "Our 127,000 teammates across the country gave their all to keep our customers safe and healthy and our grocery shelves stocked during the unprecedented coronavirus pandemic. Due to their herculean efforts, our Company saw significant market share increases. Our team has also surpassed our Project Sunrise turnaround targets. This three-year transformation is one of the most significant turnarounds in Canadian retail history."

The Company successfully completed its three-year transformation, Project Sunrise, exceeding management's initial expectations of $500 million in net benefits. In fiscal 2020, the Company achieved over $250 million of in-year benefits, for a cumulative benefit of over $550 million, an increase of over $50 million compared to original projections for the three-year program. These in-year benefits for fiscal 2020 were driven by the completion of the category reset program, continued cost reductions and operational improvements.

Dividend Declaration

The Company declared a quarterly dividend of $0.13 per share on both the Non-Voting Class A shares ("Class A shares") and the Class B common shares that will be payable on July 31, 2020 to shareholders of record on July 15, 2020, an increase in the annualized dividend rate of 8.3%. These dividends are eligible dividends as defined for the purposes of the Income Tax Act (Canada) and applicable provincial legislation.

Normal Course Issuer Bid ("NCIB")

In fiscal 2020, pursuant to an NCIB for the purchase of up to 3.5 million Class A shares filed in the first quarter of fiscal 2020, the Company purchased for cancellation 2,997,583 Class A shares through the facilities of the Toronto Stock Exchange ("TSX") and alternative trading systems at a weighted average price of $33.36 for a total consideration of $100.0 million.

The Company has renewed its NCIB by filing a notice of intention with the TSX to purchase for cancellation up to 5 million Class A shares representing approximately 3.0% of the 170,971,038 Class A shares outstanding, subject to regulatory approval. The purchases will be made through the facilities of the TSX and/or any alternative trading systems to the extent they are eligible. The price that Empire will pay for any such shares will be the market price at the time of acquisition. Purchases may commence on July 2, 2020, and shall terminate not later than July 1, 2021.

The average daily trading volume (the "ADTV") of the Class A shares was 632,893 on the TSX over the last six completed calendar months. Accordingly, under the policies of the TSX, Empire is entitled to purchase, during any one trading day up to 158,223 Class A shares (being 25 percent of the ADTV of the Class A shares). Empire is entitled to purchase a larger amount of Class A shares per calendar week, subject to the maximum number that may be acquired under the normal course issuer bid, if the transaction meets the block purchase exception under the TSX rules.

The Company has also renewed its automatic share purchase plan with its designated broker allowing the purchase of Class A shares for cancellation under its NCIB during trading black-out periods, subject to regulatory approval.

The Company believes that repurchasing shares at the prevailing market prices from time to time is a worthwhile use of funds and in the best interests of Empire and its shareholders.

CONSOLIDATED OPERATING RESULTS

13 Weeks Ended
         52 Weeks Ended



                                                                                                May 2,
          May 4,
           $               May 2,
       May 4,
            $



       ($ in millions, except per share amounts)                                                 2020                                     2019
          Change                    2020                2019
          Change

    ---


       Sales                                                                  $

           7,012.4                        $
            6,220.4   $
           792.0 $

         26,588.2   $
           25,142.0   $
            1,446.2



       Gross profit(1)                                                                        1,819.5                                  1,577.5            242.0               6,633.3             6,083.6               549.7



       Operating income                                                                         324.3                                    194.2            130.1               1,111.8               652.3               459.5



       Adjusted operating income(1)                                                             328.9                                    200.3            128.6               1,130.1               683.6               446.5



       EBITDA(1)                                                                                527.8                                    300.1            227.7               1,892.4             1,069.5               822.9



       Adjusted EBITDA(1)                                                                       527.8                                    300.1            227.7               1,892.4             1,076.2               816.2



       Net earnings(2)                                                                          177.8                                    122.1             55.7                 583.5               387.3               196.2



       Adjusted net earnings(1)(2)                                                              181.2                                    126.5             54.7                 596.8               410.0               186.8

    ---





              Diluted earnings per share

    ---


       EPS(2)(3)                                                                 $

            0.66                           $
            0.45    $
           0.21     $

          2.15       $
           1.42      $
            0.73

    ---


       Adjusted EPS(1)(2)                                                        $

            0.67                           $
            0.46    $
           0.21     $

          2.20       $
           1.50      $
            0.70

    ---


       Diluted weighted average number of shares



       outstanding (in millions)                                                                269.7                                    272.8                                 271.4               272.6

    ===


       Dividend per share                                                        $

            0.12                           $
            0.11                     $

          0.48       $
           0.44

    ===




     13 Weeks Ended
         52 Weeks Ended



                                                  May 2, 2020
         May 4, 2019   May 2, 2020
          May 4, 2019




       Same-store sales(1) growth                      15.0%                                     3.2%          4.6%                      2.8%



       Same-store sales growth, excluding fuel         18.0%                                     3.8%          5.7%                      2.7%



       Gross margin(1)                                 25.9%                                    25.4%         24.9%                     24.2%



       EBITDA margin(1)                                 7.5%                                     4.8%          7.1%                      4.3%



       Adjusted EBITDA margin(1)                        7.5%                                     4.8%          7.1%                      4.3%



       Effective income tax rate                       26.0%                                    25.5%         26.4%                     25.7%

    ---
(1) See "Non-GAAP Financial
              Measures & Financial Metrics"
              section of this News Release.




     (2) Attributable to owners of the
              Company.




     (3) Earnings per share ("EPS").

Empire's results for the fourth quarter and all of the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020 include Farm Boy operations whereas prior year comparatives include 21 weeks of Farm Boy operations. All metrics, including same-store sales, include the consolidation of Farm Boy operations.

IFRS 16 Impact

Effective May 5, 2019, the Company adopted IFRS 16 "Leases" ("IFRS 16"), which replaces IAS 17, "Leases" ("IAS 17") and related interpretations. IFRS 16 intends to align the presentation of leased assets more closely to owned assets. This standard will not impact Empire's strategy, business operations or cash flow generation. The tables below outline the impact of the adoption of IFRS 16 on certain financial metrics for the quarter and fiscal year ended May 2, 2020.

13 Weeks Ended                                               Impact of           Change




       ($ in millions, except per share amounts)                           May 2, 2020
     May 4, 2019            Change          IFRS 16(1)
     (excl. IFRS 16)

    ---


       Operating income                                             $

           324.3       $
            194.2 $
           130.1  $
              47.9      $
              82.2



       Adjusted operating income                                                 328.9                 200.3          128.6              47.9                  80.7



       EBITDA                                                                    527.8                 300.1          227.7             141.2                  86.5



       Adjusted EBITDA                                                           527.8                 300.1          227.7             141.2                  86.5



       EBITDA margin                                                              7.5%                 4.8%          2.7%             2.0%                 0.7%



       Adjusted EBITDA margin                                                     7.5%                 4.8%          2.7%             2.0%                 0.7%



       Finance costs, net                                                         69.0                  21.2           47.8              50.2                 (2.4)



       Net earnings(2)                                                           177.8                 122.1           55.7             (1.6)                 57.3



       Adjusted net earnings(2)                                                  181.2                 126.5           54.7             (3.2)                 57.9



       Adjusted EPS (fully diluted)(2)                                            0.67                  0.46           0.21              0.01                  0.20

    ---




     52 Weeks Ended                                               Impact of           Change




       ($ in millions, except per share amounts)                           May 2, 2020
     May 4, 2019            Change          IFRS 16(1)
     (excl. IFRS 16)

    ---


       Operating income                                           $

           1,111.8       $
            652.3 $
           459.5 $
              181.2     $
              278.3



       Adjusted operating income                                               1,130.1                 683.6          446.5             181.2                 265.3



       EBITDA                                                                  1,892.4               1,069.5          822.9             531.0                 291.9



       Adjusted EBITDA                                                         1,892.4               1,076.2          816.2             531.0                 285.2



       EBITDA margin                                                              7.1%                 4.3%          2.8%             2.0%                 0.8%



       Adjusted EBITDA margin                                                     7.1%                 4.3%          2.8%             2.0%                 0.8%



       Finance costs, net                                                        279.1                  91.6          187.5             189.9                 (2.4)



       Net earnings(2)                                                           583.5                 387.3          196.2             (6.2)                202.4



       Adjusted net earnings(2)                                                  596.8                 410.0          186.8            (11.1)                197.9



       Adjusted EPS (fully diluted)(2)                                            2.20                  1.50           0.70            (0.02)                 0.72

    ---
(1) Reflects the impact of changing
              accounting standards from IAS
              17 to IFRS 16 in the first
              quarter of fiscal 2020.




     (2) Attributable to owners of the
              Company.

The Company transitioned to IFRS 16 using the modified retrospective approach with the cumulative impact of initially applying the new standard recognized in retained earnings on May 5, 2019. Prior period comparatives have not been restated. For a more complete description of the impact of IFRS 16 on Empire, please refer to Empire's Management's Discussion & Analysis ("MD&A") for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020.

COVID-19

The recent novel coronavirus ("COVID-19" or "pandemic") outbreak has resulted in restrictions by government authorities and the encouragement for Canadians to stay-at-home, leading to increased safety protocols in stores and distribution centres, shifts in consumer demand and consumption, and volatile financial markets. The Company has taken a proactive approach, mobilizing a cross-functional pandemic planning task force with a mandate to monitor, and effectively mitigate, risks posed to employees, customers and the business. Management's top priorities remain the health and safety of employees, customers and communities while maintaining a resilient supply chain to meet the needs of Canadians and supporting charitable organizations. Throughout this period, Empire has moved with urgency to invest in increased safety and sanitization products and procedures to ensure customers and employees are protected while shopping and working in stores. Management is closely monitoring the impact of the pandemic on food retail around the world and continues to learn from best practices.

COVID-19 and related restrictions materially impacted the Company's operating results and financial performance in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020. Same-store sales growth excluding fuel in the fourth quarter was 18.0%, substantially driven by changing customer shopping patterns throughout the pandemic including a shift in consumption from restaurants and hospitality businesses to grocery stores. Sales were significantly higher in all formats except fuel. Fuel sales for the quarter decreased by approximately 40% due to a combination of lower demand and a sharp decrease in fuel prices. The Company introduced its "Hero Pay" program for frontline employees in stores and distribution centres, increasing employee compensation to reflect the work of employees serving customers. The temporary Hero Pay program was completed on June 13, 2020. The Company also provided frontline and distribution centre employees with a one-time bonus, equal to two weeks of Hero Pay. Gross margin increased in line with the increase in sales volume. Investments in employees and communities, primarily Hero Pay, combined with additional safety and sanitization expenses, increased selling and administrative expenses by approximately $80 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020, partially offsetting the positive effect of increased sales.

The future impact of COVID-19 is uncertain and dependent on the duration, the spread and intensity of the virus, and ultimately, when a vaccine is widely accessible. The Company's balance sheet continues to remain strong with significant free cash flow available. As of May 2, 2020, Empire had $1,008 million in cash and cash equivalents, and had access to approximately $761 million in unutilized, aggregate credit facilities that do not expire until fiscal 2023. In addition, non-revolving credit facilities of approximately $525 million expire at the end of calendar 2020, and the Company anticipates renewing these facilities before their expiry.

Sales

Quarterly sales were materially affected by changes in customer buying related to COVID-19. Starting on February 28, 2020, the Company experienced significantly higher sales in all formats except fuel. Sales further accelerated from March 8, 2020 onward as customers began to stock up in preparation for possible stay-at-home requirements. By March 22, 2020, the sales intensity began to subside, although still significantly above prior year levels. For the two-week period beginning March 8, 2020, same-store sales growth excluding fuel peaked at approximately 50%. Towards the end of the quarter, same-store sales growth, excluding fuel and the impact of the Easter period, stabilized at a lower level of approximately 23%.

Overall, sales for the quarter ended May 2, 2020 increased by 12.7% driven primarily by the impact of COVID-19 on the food retailing segment, partially offset by lower fuel sales.

Sales for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020 increased by 5.8% driven by the impact of COVID-19, improved performance across the business, the consolidation of a full year of Farm Boy results, the expansion of FreshCo in Western Canada and inflation. These increases were partially offset by temporary store closures in Western Canada pending their conversion to FreshCo, reduced fuel litres sold due to COVID-19 travel restrictions and lower fuel prices.

Gross Profit

Gross profit for the fourth quarter increased by 15.3% primarily as a result of the impact of COVID-19 on sales and category reset benefits. These increases were partially offset by temporary store closures in Western Canada pending their conversion to FreshCo. Gross margin for the quarter increased to 25.9% from 25.4% last year. The increase was primarily a result of category reset benefits, the effect of COVID-19 sales mix changes between banners, a less promotional environment and higher private label penetration. These positive effects were partly offset by service department closures, regulatory changes impacting the pharmacy business and reduced fuel sales.

Gross profit for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020 increased by 9.0% primarily as a result of the impact of COVID-19, category reset benefits, the inclusion of a full year of Farm Boy results and increases in sales. These increases were partially offset by temporary store closures in Western Canada pending their conversion to FreshCo. Gross margin for the fiscal year increased to 24.9% from 24.2% last year. The increase was primarily a result of category reset benefits and positive margin rate contributions from the inclusion of Farm Boy results, partially offset by the effect of sales mix between banners.

Operating Income

For the quarter ended May 2, 2020, operating income increased mainly due to improved earnings from the Food retailing segment as a result of higher sales and margins driven by the impact of COVID-19, category reset benefits and a gain on the surrender of a lease, partially offset by higher selling and administrative expenses. Selling and administrative expenses increased primarily as a result of increased retail labour costs to support the higher level of sales volume. The increased retail labour costs are largely due to Empire's Hero Pay program for frontline employees in stores and distribution centres which increased employee compensation to reflect the heroic work of Empire's employees serving customers and related retail incentive costs. The increases in selling and administrative expenses were partially offset by the implementation of IFRS 16 and cost savings achieved from Project Sunrise.

Operating income increased for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020 mainly due to cost savings achieved from Project Sunrise, improved earnings from the Food retailing segment as a result of higher sales and margins driven by COVID-19 and a gain on the surrender of a lease, partially offset by higher selling and administrative expenses. Selling and administrative expenses increased primarily as a result of the inclusion of a full year of Farm Boy results, increased retail labour costs to support the higher level of sales volume and Hero Pay, retail incentive costs, and lower impairment reversals than the prior year. The increases in selling and administrative expenses were partially offset by the implementation of IFRS 16, cost savings achieved from Project Sunrise and the cost of voluntary buyouts of British Columbia ("B.C.") Safeway employees in the prior year.

Operating income from the Investments and other operations segment decreased for the quarter ended May 2, 2020 as a result of reduced equity earnings from Crombie Real Estate Investment Trust ("Crombie REIT") driven by lower gains on disposal of investment properties compared to the prior year. In the fourth quarter of the prior year, Crombie REIT sold a 26 property portfolio that contributed an additional $8.4 million to the Company's equity earnings from Crombie REIT and $6.4 million in Other operations, reflecting the reversal of previously deferred gains on disposal on properties previously sold to Crombie REIT.

Operating income from the Investments and other operations segment decreased for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020 principally due to a prior year gain on disposal of a 26 property portfolio by Crombie REIT, partially offset by the sale of a 15 property portfolio by Crombie REIT, as subsequently discussed in the "Investment and Other Operations" section.

13 Weeks Ended
     52 Weeks Ended




       ($ in millions)                                              May 2, 2020                     May 4, 2019       May 2, 2020      May 4, 2019

    ---


       Operating income                               $

           324.3                  $
            194.2 $

           1,111.8 $
              652.3

    ---


       Adjustments:



       Intangible amortization associated with the



       Canada Safeway acquisition                                           4.6                              6.1               18.3              24.6



       Business acquisition costs                                                                                                              6.7

    ---

                                                                             4.6                              6.1               18.3              31.3




       Adjusted operating income                      $

           328.9                  $
            200.3 $

           1,130.1 $
              683.6

    ===

EBITDA

13 Weeks Ended
     52 Weeks Ended




       ($ in millions)                             May 2, 2020                     May 4, 2019       May 2, 2020      May 4, 2019

    ---


       EBITDA                        $

           527.8                  $
            300.1 $

           1,892.4 $
            1,069.5

    ---


       Adjustment:



       Business acquisition costs                                                                                             6.7

    ---

                                                                                                                               6.7




       Adjusted EBITDA               $

           527.8                  $
            300.1 $

           1,892.4 $
            1,076.2

    ===

For the quarter ended May 2, 2020, EBITDA increased to $527.8 million from $300.1 million in the prior year mainly as a result of the same factors affecting operating income. Excluding the impact of IFRS 16, EBITDA would have been $386.6 million, an increase of $86.5 million. Adjusted EBITDA margin was 7.5%. Excluding the impact of the implementation of IFRS 16, adjusted EBITDA margin increased by 70 basis points over the prior year.

For the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020, EBITDA increased to $1,892.4 million from $1,069.5 million in the prior year mainly as a result of the same factors affecting operating income. Excluding the impact of IFRS 16, EBITDA would have been $1,361.4 million, an increase of $291.9 million. Excluding the impact of the implementation of IFRS 16, adjusted EBITDA margin increased by 80 basis points over the prior year.

Income Taxes

The effective income tax rate for the fourth quarter ended May 2, 2020 was 26.0% compared to 25.5% last year. The current quarter effective tax rate was lower than the statutory rate primarily due to favourable tax treatment of capital gains and differing tax rates of various entities. The effective rate in the prior year was lower than the statutory rate due to capital gains on property dispositions and differing tax rates of various entities.

The effective income tax rate for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020 was 26.4% compared to 25.7% last year. The current year effective rate was lower than the statutory rate primarily due to capital gains on property dispositions and differing tax rates of various entities. The prior year's effective rate was lower than the statutory rate primarily due to capital gains on property dispositions and a decrease in tax liabilities related to unrecognized tax benefits.

Net Earnings

13 Weeks Ended
      52 Weeks Ended




       ($ in millions, except per share amounts)                               May 2, 2020
         May 4, 2019         May 2, 2020
        May 4, 2019

    ---


       Net earnings(1)                                              $

                177.8   $
             122.1 $

              583.5   $
              387.3

    ---


       EPS (fully diluted)                                           $

                0.66    $
             0.45  $

              2.15    $
              1.42

    ---


       Adjustments (net of income taxes):



       Intangible amortization associated with the



       Canada Safeway acquisition                                                      3.4                4.4                 13.3                17.8



       Business acquisition costs                                                                                                               4.9


                                                                                        3.4                4.4                 13.3                22.7




       Adjusted net earnings(1)                                     $

                181.2   $
             126.5 $

              596.8   $
              410.0

    ===


       Adjusted EPS (fully diluted)                                  $

                0.67    $
             0.46  $

              2.20    $
              1.50

    ===


       Diluted weighted average number of shares



       outstanding (in millions)                                                     269.7              272.8                271.4               272.6

    ===
(1) Attributable to owners of the
              Company.

Free Cash Flow

13 Weeks Ended
      52 Weeks Ended




       ($ in millions)                                           May 2, 2020    May 4, 2019       May 2, 2020      May 4, 2019

    ---

        Cash flows from operating
         activities                                    $

                887.6 $
            373.8 $

           2,089.4 $
              885.6


        Add:  proceeds on disposal of
         assets(1) and lease



       terminations                                                     26.8            28.9              193.1              89.7


        Less: payments of lease
         liabilities, net of payments


        received for finance
         subleases                                                    (138.3)                          (533.9)


        Less: acquisitions of
         property, equipment,
         investment


        property and intangibles                                      (181.3)        (227.1)           (617.8)          (434.6)



       Free cash flow (2)                             $

                594.8 $
            175.6 $

           1,130.8 $
              540.7

    ===
(1) Proceeds on disposal of assets
              include property, equipment
              and investment property.




     (2) Amounts for fiscal 2020
              reflect the change in the
              free cash flow definition.
              See "Non-GAAP Financial
              Measures & Financial Metrics"
              section of this News Release.

Free cash flow increased for the quarter ended May 2, 2020 as a result of an improvement in working capital due to fluctuations in payables, increased cash earnings and a decrease in capital investments as discussed below.

Free cash flow increased for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020 as a result of an improvement in working capital, increased cash earnings and an increase in proceeds on disposal of assets, partially offset by increased capital investments.

Capital Expenditures

The Company invested $226.6 million and $574.8 million for the quarter and fiscal year ended May 2, 2020, respectively (2019 - $227.1 million and $434.6 million) including renovations, construction of new stores, construction of an e-commerce fulfillment centre and construction of FreshCo locations in Western Canada. The Company had previously expected that capital expenditures((1)) in fiscal 2020 would be approximately $600 million. However, due to the shutdown of non-essential construction in some provinces, several real estate projects were put on hold and as a result, Empire's capital spending for fiscal 2020 reduced to $575 million, in line with Management's revised estimates released in its COVID-19 crisis update dated April 15, 2020.

(1)    C
                apital
                             expenditure is calculated on an
                             accrual basis and includes
                             acquisitions of property,
                             equipment and investment
                             properties, and additions to
                             intangibles.

FINANCIAL PERFORMANCE BY SEGMENT

Food Retailing

13 Weeks Ended
             52 Weeks Ended



                                                    May 2,      May 4,
        $        May 2,       May 4,
      $



       ($ in millions)                               2020         2019                     Change          2020          2019      Change

    ---


       Sales                     $

                7,012.4 $
       6,220.4                $
        792.0 $

      26,588.2 $
       25,142.0 $
      1,446.2



       Gross profit                               1,819.5      1,577.5                      242.0        6,633.3       6,083.6       549.7



       Operating income                             316.7        164.0                      152.7        1,040.2         561.8       478.4



       Adjusted operating income                    321.3        170.1                      151.2        1,058.5         593.1       465.4



       EBITDA                                       526.4        269.8                      256.6        1,826.8         978.7       848.1



       Adjusted EBITDA                              526.4        269.8                      256.6        1,826.8         985.4       841.4



       Net earnings(1)                              169.7         93.0                       76.7          528.1         316.5       211.6



       Adjusted net earnings(1)                     173.1         97.4                       75.7          541.4         339.2       202.2

    ---
(1)
                             Attributable to owners of the
                             Company.

Investments and Other Operations

13 Weeks Ended
             52 Weeks Ended



                                                                    May 2,      May 4,
        $        May 2,       May 4,
      $



       ($ in millions)                                               2020         2019                     Change          2020          2019      Change

    ---


       Crombie REIT                                 $

                6.3 $
          22.9                $
       (16.6) $

         50.7  $
          63.6  $
      (12.9)



       Genstar                                                        2.3          1.5                        0.8           20.1          23.4       (3.3)



       Other operations, net of corporate expenses                  (1.0)         5.8                      (6.8)           0.8           3.5       (2.7)

    ---

                                                     $

                7.6 $
          30.2                $
       (22.6) $

         71.6  $
          90.5  $
      (18.9)

For the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020, income from Investments and other operations decreased as a result of reduced equity earnings from Crombie REIT due to lower gains on disposal of investment properties compared to the prior year. Included in the prior year was a disposal of a 26 property portfolio that contributed an additional $8.4 million to the Company's equity earnings from Crombie REIT and $6.4 million in Other operations, reflecting reversal of previously deferred gains on disposal on properties previously sold to Crombie REIT. This decrease was partially offset by the sale of a 15 property portfolio by Crombie REIT in the current fiscal year that contributed an additional $15.1 million to the Company's equity earnings and a $6.9 million deferred gain recognition. Of the $6.9 million deferred gain recognition, $4.6 million was included in Other operations, net of corporate expenses, with the remaining $2.3 million recognized in Food retailing. Deferred gain recognition relates to the realization of previously deferred gains on properties sold by the Company to Crombie REIT.

CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL CONDITION

May 2, 2020



       ($ in millions, except per share and ratio calculations)            May 2, 2020(1)
      Impact of IFRS 16
          May 4, 2019
          May 5, 2018

    ---


       Shareholders' equity, net of non-controlling interest     $

              3,924.6   $
              (425.8)       $
            4,003.3       $
             3,702.8



       Book value per common share(2)                              $

              14.51    $
              (1.58)         $
            14.72         $
             13.62



       Long-term debt, including current portion                 $

              1,675.2    $
              (29.1)       $
            2,020.9       $
             1,666.9



       Long-term lease liabilities, including current portion    $

              5,266.2   $
              5,266.2
     $
     $



       Net funded debt to net total capital(2)                                      60.2%                46.4%                   26.8%                   21.9%



       Funded debt to adjusted EBITDA(2)                                             3.7x                 2.4x                    1.9x                    1.6x



       Adjusted EBITDA to interest expense(2)                                        6.8x               (9.1)x                   12.4x                   10.5x



       Current assets to current liabilities (3)                                     0.8x                                         1.0x                    0.8x



       Total assets(3)                                          $

              14,632.9                             $
            9,602.4       $
             8,662.0



       Total non-current financial liabilities(3)                $

              6,559.0                             $
            2,838.1       $
             1,929.9

    ---
(1) Key Financial Condition Measures are
              impacted by the implementation of
              IFRS 16.




     (2) See "Non-GAAP Financial Measures &
              Financial Metrics" section of this
              News Release.




     (3) See "Accounting Standards and
              Policies" section of Empire's MD&A
              for the impact of IFRS 16 on the
              assets and liabilities metrics for
              the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020.

During fiscal 2020, Dominion Bond Rating Service ("DBRS") upgraded Sobeys' credit rating from BB (high) with a positive trend to BBB (low) with a stable trend. Standard & Poor's ("S&P") confirmed Sobeys' rating at BB+ and upgraded Sobeys' outlook from stable to positive.

Rating Agency

     Credit Rating (Issuer rating)

         Trend/Outlook

    ---


       DBRS
              BBB (low)
            Stable



       S&P
              BB+
            Positive

    ---

The Company has a $250.0 million senior, unsecured revolving term credit facility with a maturity date of November 4, 2022. As of May 2, 2020, the outstanding amount of the credit facility was $62.6 million (2019 - $ nil). Interest payable on this facility fluctuates with changes in the Canadian prime rate or bankers' acceptance rates.

On June 2, 2017, Sobeys established a senior, unsecured non-revolving credit facility for $500.0 million. Interest payable on this facility fluctuates with changes in the Canadian prime rate or bankers' acceptance rates. The facility was fully utilized on August 8, 2018 to repay long-term debt. As of May 2, 2020, $125.0 million remained outstanding on this facility.

On December 5, 2018, Sobeys established a senior, unsecured non-revolving credit facility for $400.0 million. Interest payable on this facility fluctuates with changes in the Canadian prime rate or bankers' acceptance rates. The facility was fully utilized on December 10, 2018.

Sobeys has a $650.0 million senior, unsecured revolving term credit facility with a maturity date of November 4, 2022. As of May 2, 2020, the outstanding amount of the facility was $ nil (2019 - $ nil), and Sobeys has issued $76.4 million in letters of credit against it (2019 - $65.9 million). Interest payable on this facility fluctuates with changes in the Canadian prime rate or bankers' acceptance rates.

The Company believes its cash and cash equivalents on hand, approximately $761.0 million in unutilized, aggregate credit facilities as of May 2, 2020, and cash generated from operating activities will enable the Company to fund future capital investments, pension plan contributions, working capital, current funded debt obligations and ongoing business requirements. The Company also believes it has sufficient funding in place to meet these requirements and other short and long-term financial obligations. The Company mitigates potential liquidity risk by ensuring its sources of funds are diversified by term to maturity and source of credit.

For additional information on Empire's long-term debt, see Note 16 of the Company's audited annual consolidated financial statements for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020.

OTHER ITEMS

Discount Expansion to Western Canada

In December 2017, Sobeys announced plans to expand its discount format to Western Canada and expects to convert up to 25% of its 255 Safeway and Sobeys full service format stores in Western Canada to its FreshCo discount format. The Company continues to be on track to open approximately 65 locations within the initial five-year time frame.

28 FreshCo locations have been confirmed:

--  17 stores are open and operating as at June 17, 2020:
  o 15 in B.C.
  o 2 in Manitoba
--  11 stores are expected to open in fiscal 2021:
  o 4 in Saskatchewan
  o 4 in Manitoba
  o 2 in Alberta
  o 1 in B.C.

Of the 17 stores operating as at June 17, 2020, four were opened subsequent to the end of the quarter.

As at June 17, 2020, five full service format stores in Western Canada remain closed pending conversion to the FreshCo discount banner, four of which were closed in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020.

All FreshCo stores in Western Canada and Ontario are branded with the new, evolved FreshCo 2.0 look which offers customers a strong discount and value experience.

Store Closure, Conversion and Labour Buyout Costs

In the first quarter of fiscal 2020, the Company expensed $21.0 million (2019 - $ nil) in closure and conversion costs. These costs relate to the conversion of ten Safeway locations to FreshCo stores and the conversion of two Company locations to Farm Boy stores. Of the $21.0 million, $3.7 million was reversed in the second quarter.

In the prior fiscal year, provisions totalling $45.0 million were recognized related to store conversions and labour buyouts. Of the $45.0 million, $6.1 million was reversed in the second quarter of the current year and an additional $4.2 million was reversed in the fourth quarter.

The reversals in fiscal 2020 were attributable to revised estimates relating to store conversions and labour buyouts. As a result, the net fiscal 2020 expense was $7.0 million (2019 - $45.0 million).

E-commerce

On April 27, 2020, the Company began testing Voil� by Sobeys, its new online grocery home delivery service for the Greater Toronto Area ("GTA"). The customer launch of Voil� was accelerated to meet the rapidly increasing online grocery demand from customers for home delivery. The Company will begin delivering to customers in June, in several areas of the GTA and will continue its phased rollout to customers across the GTA over the next several months.

Construction of Voil�'s second Customer Fulfillment Centre ("CFC") in Montreal was delayed due to the temporary shutdown of non-essential construction in Quebec due to COVID-19. Construction has resumed, and the Company is working to make up for these delays and analyzing the impact on its previously disclosed launch date of 2021. This second CFC will support the launch of Voil� par IGA which will serve Ottawa and cities in the province of Quebec.

Outlook

The pandemic has fundamentally impacted how Canadians shop for food. Canadians are shopping less frequently and with larger basket sizes to reduce exposure to COVID-19. With this shift in shopping behavior, many are gravitating to one-stop-shop grocery stores that meet all their household needs and online grocery.

In Canada, online grocery sales have more than tripled since before COVID-19. Empire's e-commerce businesses in Quebec and B.C. have experienced exponential growth and have septupled sales since the crisis began. Empire's automated centrally picked grocery e-commerce solution is expected to be favourably impacted by the material increase in online grocery penetration. Voil�, powered by Ocado Group plc's ("Ocado") technology, will have its customer launch in the month of June. It is expected that Voil� will have a dilutive impact of approximately $0.05 on adjusted earnings per share on the first quarter of fiscal 2021 as it ramps up its operations.

As Canada and the world adapt and progress in these unprecedented times, it is too early to forecast sales in the medium term. Management continues to anticipate a percentage of the consumption that has shifted from restaurants and hospitality businesses to grocery stores will remain in grocery stores.

During the first six weeks of the first quarter of fiscal 2021, Empire's same-store sales growth, excluding fuel, ranged from 9% to 17%, averaging approximately 13%. Growth was slower towards the end of the six-week period. The temporary Hero Pay program was completed on June 13, 2020. The Company also provided frontline and distribution centre employees with a one-time bonus, equal to two weeks of Hero Pay. Empire estimates the investment in Hero Pay for the first part of the quarter combined with the cost of maintaining sanitization and safety measures will increase selling and administrative expenses approximately $60 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2021.

FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION

This document contains forward-looking statements which are presented for the purpose of assisting the reader to contextualize the Company's financial position and understand management's expectations regarding the Company's strategic priorities, objectives and plans. These forward-looking statements may not be appropriate for other purposes. Forward-looking statements are identified by words or phrases such as "anticipates", "expects", "believes", "estimates", "intends", "could", "may", "plans", "predicts", "projects", "will", "would", "foresees" and other similar expressions or the negative of these terms.

These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, the following items:

--  The Company's plans to purchase for cancellation Class A shares
        under the normal course issuer bid which may be impacted by
        market and economic conditions, availability of sellers,
        changes in laws and regulations, and the results of operations;
    --  The Company's anticipation that a percentage of food
        consumption that has shifted from restaurants and hospitality
        businesses to grocery stores will remain in grocery stores,
        which may be impacted by the duration of the shutdown due to
        COVID-19, the severity of the pandemic on people's health
        across Canada, the ability for restaurants and hospitality
        businesses to re-open and resume operations, and the demand for
        restaurants and hospitality services when they resume;
    --  The Company's expectation that its cash and cash equivalents on
        hand, unutilized credit facilities and cash generated from
        operating activities will enable the Company to fund future
        capital investments, pension plan contributions, working
        capital, current funded debt obligations and ongoing business
        requirements, and its belief that it has sufficient funding in
        place to meet these requirements and other short and long-term
        obligations, all of which could be impacted by changes in the
        economic environment;
    --  The Company's expectation that it will renew its credit
        facilities before their expiry which may be impacted by
        availability of debt in the market;
    --  The FreshCo expansion in Western Canada, including the
        Company's expectations regarding future operating results and
        profitability, the amount and timing of expenses, and the
        number, location, feasibility and timing of construction and
        conversions, all of which may be impacted by COVID-19,
        construction schedules and permits, the economic environment
        and labour relations;
    --  The Company's expectations regarding the implementation of its
        online grocery home delivery service and that it will have a
        dilutive impact of approximately $0.05 on adjusted earnings per
        share in the first quarter of fiscal 2021, which may be
        impacted by COVID-19, the customer response to the service and
        the performance of its business partner, Ocado; and
    --  The Company's expectation that selling and administrative
        expenses could increase by approximately $60 million in the
        first quarter of fiscal 2021 due to additional investments and
        expenses required to respond to COVID-19, which may be impacted
        by the duration of the shutdown due to COVID-19, the severity
        of the pandemic on people's health across Canada, and safety
        precautions required.

By its nature, forward-looking information requires the Company to make assumptions and is subject to inherent risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause actual results to differ materially from forward-looking statements made. For more information on risks, uncertainties and assumptions that may impact the Company's forward-looking statements, please refer to the Company's materials filed with the Canadian securities regulatory authorities, including the "Risk Management" section of the fiscal 2020 annual MD&A.

Although the Company believes the predictions, forecasts, expectations or conclusions reflected in the forward-looking information are reasonable, it can provide no assurance that such matters will prove correct. Readers are urged to consider the risks, uncertainties and assumptions carefully in evaluating the forward-looking information and are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking information. The forward-looking information in this document reflects the Company's current expectations and is subject to change. The Company does not undertake to update any forward-looking statements that may be made by or on behalf of the Company other than as required by applicable securities laws.

NON-GAAP FINANCIAL MEASURES & FINANCIAL METRICS

There are measures and metrics included in this news release that do not have a standardized meaning under generally accepted accounting principles ("GAAP") and therefore may not be comparable to similarly titled measures and metrics presented by other publicly traded companies. The Company includes these measures and metrics because it believes certain investors use these measures and metrics as a means of assessing financial performance.

Empire's definition of the non-GAAP terms are as follows:

--  Same-store sales are sales from stores in the same location in
        both reporting periods.
    --  Adjusted net earnings is net earnings, attributable to owners
        of the Company, excluding certain items to better analyze
        trends in performance and financial results. These adjustments
        result in a more comparable economic representation of the
        underlying business.
    --  Adjusted EPS (fully diluted) is calculated as adjusted net
        earnings divided by diluted weighted average number of shares
        outstanding.
    --  Gross profit is calculated as sales less cost of sales.
    --  Gross margin is gross profit divided by sales.
    --  Adjusted operating income is operating income excluding certain
        items to better analyze trends in performance. These
        adjustments result in a more comparable economic
        representation.
    --  Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization
        ("EBITDA") is calculated as net earnings before finance costs
        (net of finance income), income tax expense, and depreciation
        and amortization of intangibles.
    --  EBITDA margin is EBITDA divided by sales.
    --  Adjusted EBITDA is EBITDA excluding certain items to better
        analyze trends in performance. These adjustments result in a
        more comparable economic representation of the underlying
        business.
    --  Adjusted EBITDA margin is adjusted EBITDA divided by sales.
    --  Free cash flow is calculated as cash flows from operating
        activities, plus proceeds on disposal of property, equipment
        and investment property, less acquisitions of property,
        equipment, investment property and intangibles. The definition
        of free cash flow was changed in the first quarter of fiscal
        2020 to include the impact of net lease cash payments made.
    --  Book value per common share is shareholders' equity, net of
        non-controlling interest, divided by total common shares
        outstanding.
    --  Funded debt is all interest-bearing debt, which includes bank
        loans, bankers' acceptances, long-term debt and long-term lease
        liabilities.
    --  Net funded debt is calculated as funded debt less cash and cash
        equivalents.
    --  Net total capital is calculated as funded debt plus
        shareholders' equity, net of non-controlling interest, less
        cash and cash equivalents.
    --  Net funded debt to net total capital ratio is net funded debt
        divided by net total capital.
    --  Funded debt to adjusted EBITDA ratio is funded debt divided by
        trailing four-quarter adjusted EBITDA.
    --  Interest expense is calculated as interest expense on financial
        liabilities measured at amortized cost and interest expense on
        lease liabilities.
    --  Adjusted EBITDA to interest expense ratio is trailing
        four-quarter adjusted EBITDA divided by trailing four-quarter
        interest expense.

For a more complete description of Empire's non-GAAP measures and metrics, please see Empire's MD&A for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020.

CONFERENCE CALL INFORMATION

The Company will hold an analyst call on Thursday, June 18, 2020 beginning at 1:00 p.m. (Eastern Daylight Time) during which senior management will discuss the Company's financial results for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020. To join this conference call, dial (888) 390-0546 outside the Toronto area or (416) 764-8688 from within the Toronto area. To secure a line, please call 10 minutes prior to the conference call; you will be placed on hold until the conference call begins. The media and investing public may access this conference call via a listen mode only. You may also listen to a live audiocast of the conference call by visiting the "Quick Links" section Company's website located at www.empireco.ca.

Replay will be available by dialing (888) 390-0541 and entering access code 878696 until midnight July 2, 2020, or on the Company's website for 90 days following the conference call.

SELECTED FINANCIAL INFORMATION

The following unaudited quarterly and audited annual financial information has been prepared on a basis consistent with our audited consolidated financial statements for the year ended May 2, 2020. The information does not include all disclosures required by IFRS and should be read in conjunction with the Company's 2020 audited consolidated financial statements available at www.sedar.com or by accessing the Investor Centre section of the Company's website at www.empireco.ca.

Empire Company Limited


                     Consolidated Balance Sheets




                As At                       May 2         May 4


                     (in millions of Canadian
                      dollars)                    2020             2019

    ---



                     ASSETS



       Current


        Cash and cash equivalents                       $

      1,008.4    $
       553.3



       Receivables                                              535.3         444.2



       Inventories                                            1,489.4       1,441.8



       Prepaid expenses                                         113.1         134.1


        Loans and other receivables                               68.4          18.7


        Income taxes receivable                                   34.8          27.9


        Assets held for sale                                       6.1          19.5





                                                               3,255.5       2,639.5




        Loans and other receivables                              580.8          70.8


        Investments, at equity                                   607.5         589.4



       Other assets                                              28.7          43.4


        Property and equipment                                 2,883.4       2,911.5


        Right-of-use assets                                    4,033.5


        Investment property                                      114.0         100.0



       Intangibles                                              968.8       1,062.0



       Goodwill                                               1,573.7       1,571.5


        Deferred tax assets                                      587.0         614.3





                                                       $

      14,632.9  $
       9,602.4





                     LIABILITIES



       Current


        Accounts payable and accrued
         liabilities                                    $

      2,951.9  $
       2,496.4


        Income taxes payable                                      23.2          29.0



       Provisions                                                48.7         119.4


        Long-term debt due within
         one year                                                570.0          36.5


        Lease liabilities due within
         one year                                                466.2




                                                               4,060.0       2,681.3





       Provisions                                                54.7          93.1



       Long-term debt                                         1,105.2       1,984.4


        Long-term lease liabilities                            4,800.0


        Other long-term liabilities                               97.5         269.0


        Employee future benefits                                 304.1         286.1


        Deferred tax liabilities                                 197.5         205.5



                                                              10,619.0       5,519.4





                     SHAREHOLDERS' EQUITY



       Capital stock                                          2,013.2       2,042.6


        Contributed surplus                                       23.2          25.2



       Retained earnings                                      1,872.1       1,920.8


        Accumulated other
         comprehensive income                                     16.1          14.7





                                                               3,924.6       4,003.3




        Non-controlling interest                                  89.3          79.7





                                                               4,013.9       4,083.0





                                                       $

      14,632.9  $
       9,602.4
Empire Company
                      Limited                                        Unaudited


                     Consolidated
                      Statements of
                      Earnings                                    13 Weeks Ended                          52 Weeks Ended

                                                                                                                         ---

                     (in millions of
                      Canadian dollars,          May 2                           May 4            May 2                      May 4


                     except share and per
                      share amounts)              2020                             2019              2020                        2019

    ---                                                                                                                        ---




       Sales                                          $

              7,012.4         $
           6,220.4                              $

          26,588.2 $
           25,142.0



       Other income                                                     26.7                     24.2                                                69.2              68.3


        Share of earnings from
         investments, at equity                                           8.3                     24.4                                                71.8              87.9





       Operating expenses



       Cost of sales                                                 5,192.9                  4,642.9                                            19,954.9          19,058.4


        Selling and administrative
         expenses                                                     1,530.2                  1,431.9                                             5,662.5           5,587.5





       Operating income                                                324.3                    194.2                                             1,111.8             652.3





       Finance costs, net                                               69.0                     21.2                                               279.1              91.6





        Earnings before income taxes                                    255.3                    173.0                                               832.7             560.7





       Income tax expense                                               66.5                     44.1                                               219.9             144.3





        Net earnings                                     $

              188.8           $
           128.9                                 $

           612.8    $
           416.4

                                                                                                                                                                        ===



        Earnings for the period
         attributable to:


        Non-controlling
         interest                                         $

              11.0             $
           6.8                                  $

           29.3     $
           29.1


        Owners of the Company                                           177.8                    122.1                                               583.5             387.3





                                                         $

              188.8           $
           128.9                                 $

           612.8    $
           416.4

                                                                                                                                                                        ===




       Earnings per share



       Basic                                             $

              0.66            $
           0.45                                  $

           2.16     $
           1.42



       Diluted                                           $

              0.66            $
           0.45                                  $

           2.15     $
           1.42





       Weighted average number of common shares


        outstanding, in millions



       Basic                                                           269.0                    271.9                                               270.4             271.9



       Diluted                                                         269.7                    272.8                                               271.4             272.6
Unaudited


                     Empire Company Limited   13 Weeks Ended                   52 Weeks Ended



                     Consolidated Statements
                      of Cash Flows                May 2                      May 4                May 2   May 4


                     (in millions of Canadian
                      dollars)                          2020                    2019                  2020     2019

    ---



                     Operations



       Net earnings                                           $

       188.8                 $
        128.9             $

           612.8 $
            416.4


        Adjustments for:



       Depreciation                                                    186.7                        84.7                          709.1           333.0


        Income tax expense                                               66.5                        44.1                          219.9           144.3


        Finance costs, net                                               69.0                        21.2                          279.1            91.6


        Amortization of
         intangibles                                                     16.8                        21.2                           71.5            84.2


        Net gain on disposal of
         assets and lease                                              (21.9)                     (19.0)                        (51.7)         (48.9)

           terminations


        Impairment (reversals) of
         non-financial assets,
         net                                                              5.4                                                       1.9          (31.3)


        Amortization of deferred
         items                                                            2.4                         0.1                            3.2             1.8


        Equity in earnings (loss)
         of other entities, net
         of


        distributions received                                           13.7                       (7.8)                          28.0           (8.6)


        Employee future benefits                                        (2.4)                      (1.2)                         (9.3)          (8.8)


        (Decrease) increase in
         long-term lease
         obligation                                                                                (4.8)                                          2.8


        Decrease in long-term
         provisions                                                     (0.3)                     (12.6)                        (17.7)         (41.9)


        Equity based compensation                                         2.0                         2.1                            6.2             6.7


        Net change in non-cash
         working capital                                                376.1                       146.6                          279.3            16.5


        Income taxes paid, net                                         (15.2)                     (29.7)                        (42.9)         (72.2)





        Cash flows from operating
         activities                                                     887.6                       373.8                        2,089.4           885.6





                     Investment


        Property, equipment and
         investment property



       purchases                                                     (155.1)                    (219.4)                       (548.8)        (411.1)


        Additions to intangibles                                       (26.2)                      (7.7)                        (69.0)         (23.5)


        Proceeds on disposal of
         assets and lease                                                26.8                        28.9                          193.1            89.7

           terminations


        Loans and other
         receivables                                                     18.1                         6.0                           20.6            12.0


        Other assets and other
         long-term liabilities                                         (17.6)                        6.9                            4.1             9.2


        Business acquisitions                                          (13.4)                      (0.8)                        (19.2)        (778.6)


        Payments received for
         finance subleases                                               19.9                                                      76.4


        Interest received                                                 2.6                         3.9                            8.0             8.3


        Increase in equity
         investments                                                   (41.5)                                                   (41.5)




        Cash flows used in
         investing activities                                         (186.4)                    (182.2)                       (376.3)      (1,094.0)





                     Financing


        Issuance of long-term
         debt                                                            16.7                        10.1                           80.8            58.3


        Repayments of long-term
         debt                                                           (7.6)                     (52.3)                        (85.2)        (605.2)


        (Repayments) advances on
         credit facilities, net                                        (20.0)                       37.4                        (313.1)          900.0



       Interest paid                                                  (27.0)                     (30.5)                        (83.5)         (90.9)


        Payments of lease
         liabilities (principal
         portion)                                                     (100.7)                                                  (392.1)


        Payments of lease
         liabilities (interest
         portion)                                                      (57.5)                                                  (218.2)


        Repurchases of Non-
         Voting Class A shares                                                                                                 (100.0)


        Acquisitions of shares
         held in trust                                                                             (0.1)                                        (0.1)


        Dividends paid, common
         shares                                                        (32.3)                     (30.0)                       (129.7)        (119.5)


        Non-controlling interest                                        (1.6)                        0.3                         (17.0)          (8.8)





        Cash flows (used in) from
         financing activities                                         (230.0)                     (65.1)                     (1,258.0)          133.8





        Increase (decrease) in
         cash and cash
         equivalents                                                    471.2                       126.5                          455.1          (74.6)




        Cash and cash
         equivalents, beginning
         of period                                                      537.2                       426.8                          553.3           627.9





        Cash and cash
         equivalents, end of
         period                                              $

       1,008.4                 $
        553.3           $

           1,008.4 $
            553.3

2020 ANNUAL REPORT

The Company's audited consolidated financial statements and the notes thereto for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020 and MD&A for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2020, which includes discussion and analysis of results of operations, financial position and cash flows will be available today, June 18, 2020. These documents can be accessed through the Investor Centre section of the Company's website at www.empireco.ca and also at www.sedar.com.

The Company's 2020 Annual Report will be available on or about July 24, 2020 and can be accessed through the Investor Centre section of the Company's website at www.empireco.ca and also at www.sedar.com.

ABOUT EMPIRE

Empire Company Limited (TSX:EMP-A.TO) is a Canadian company headquartered in Stellarton, Nova Scotia. Empire's key businesses are food retailing, through wholly-owned subsidiary Sobeys Inc., and related real estate. With approximately $26.6 billion in annual sales and $14.6 billion in assets, Empire and its subsidiaries, franchisees and affiliates employ approximately 127,000 people.

Additional financial information relating to Empire, including the Company's Annual Information Form, can be found on the Company's website at www.empireco.ca or on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

SOURCE Empire Company Limited

View original content: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/June2020/18/c9759.html

SOURCE: Empire Company Limited

Media Contact: Jacquelin Weatherbee, Vice President, Communications & Corporate
Affairs, Sobeys Inc., (416) 200-0372; Investor Contact: Katie Brine, Director
Finance, Investor Relations, Sobeys Inc., (905) 238-7124 ext. 2092

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