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Canadian Tire smashes profit estimates on relentless online surge

05/13/2021 | 07:24am EDT

(Reuters) - Retailer Canadian Tire Corp Ltd blew past analysts' estimates for first-quarter profit, as pandemic-weary people bought more bikes, patio furniture and pool supplies online to stay entertained during the COVID-19 pandemic.

E-commerce has been booming since the outbreak of the pandemic, despite accelerated vaccination efforts, as people are still wary of walking crowded store aisles and prefer ordering everything from furniture to food supplies online.

The company's online sales more than tripled in the quarter ended April 3.

The online surge compensated for a slowdown in store sales earlier this year following a resurgence of coronavirus cases that had triggered a fresh round of lockdowns and strict distancing recommendations, including limited store capacity and sale of non-essential items.

The retailer has been investing more in e-commerce in recent months, sending personalized promotions to about 10 million members of its loyalty program and ramping up its in-store pickup and curbside delivery programs.

The Toronto, Ontario-based retail chain's revenue rose 16.7%to C$3.32 billion ($2.74 billion) from a year earlier, and beat analysts' average estimate of C$2.92 billion, according to Refinitiv IBES data.

The automotive, home and sporting goods retailer posted a net income of C$186.4 million, or C$2.47 per share, compared with an income of C$12.2 million, or a loss of 22 Canadian cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding items, Canadian Tire earned C$2.57 per share, compared with a Refinitiv IBES estimate of 62 Canadian cents per share.

($1 = 1.2131 Canadian dollars)

(Reporting by Mehr Bedi in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli)

ę Reuters 2021
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