The Group’s investment in Yonghui and Robinsons Retail continued to demonstrate our diversified business portfolio strategy. Underlying results from our associates improved relative to last year.
The Group’s share of underlying Yonghui losses was US$80 million for the year, compared to a US$90 million underlying share of losses in the prior year. Yonghui’s LFL sales improved in the first half of the calendar year, which translated into improved profitability. Performance in the second half, however, was impacted by pandemic restrictions which severely disrupted store trading hours, as well as the slowdown in the overall macroeconomic environment. Yonghui’s profitability was also impacted by investments in its digital transformation and by margin dilution from a greater level of e-commerce sales.
Robinsons Retail reported strong growth in 2022, as it benefitted from the reopening of the Philippines economy, which has supported rising customer traffic and increased tourism. Improved product mix and strong cost control led to an increase in operating margin expansion. Despite inflationary pressures, the retail climate in the Philippines remains healthy, and the reopening of the country has translated into higher volumes. Robinsons Retail’s underlying profit contribution to the Group was US$24 million in 2022, an over 60% increase relative to the US$14 million contribution in 2021.