South African investment firm Long4Life reported on Wednesday a 75.5% fall in first-half trading profit, following the significant disruption of Covid-19 restrictions.
The owner of Sportsmans Warehouse stores and beauty and grooming group Sorbet, said trading profit to August 31 fell to R49.1 million ($2.98 million) from 200.7 million a year earlier.
Group revenue fell by 22.6% to R1.4 billion due to store closures.
Sales in its sport and recreation division, its biggest, fell 20.9%, as restrictions on team sports at club and school level hit its Sportsmans Warehouse stores, while travel restrictions and compromised school holidays hit its Outdoor Warehouse stores.
Helping offset further declines was increased demand for home exercise equipment, home games, running, cycling and fitness merchandise.
The firm said sales have improved in the second half of its financial year.
“With the onset of Covid-19, the trend of South Africans moving towards a lifestyle that is healthier and more focused on outdoor activities has accelerated and these businesses provide a compelling offering to service this need,” the company said.
The company’s beverages and personal care and wellness divisions fell to a trading loss of R5.3 million and R22 million, respectively, due to the suspension of alcohol sales as well as very limited on-site consumption sales, while salon closures hit Sorbet stores.