Sobeys Making Progress, But Still Has ‘Significant Work To Do’ On Turnaround Efforts, Empire CEO Says
by Marina Strauss, Globe & Mail
Posted: 2017-09-19 15:27:28 EST

Sobeys Inc. is making progress in its turnaround efforts after a troubled few years but still has work to do to fully revive its grocery operations.

"You won't be hearing any champagne corks popping over here," Michael Medline, chief executive officer of parent Empire Co. Ltd., told an analyst conference call on Thursday after posting better-than-expected quarterly results. "We still have significant work to do in all facets of our business."

The work will be bogged down by upcoming minimum-wage increases in Ontario and Alberta, which he estimates will add at least $95-million of costs to Sobeys over the next two years if the company doesn't take steps to ease the pain, such as more automation, which it plans to do but still has to find more offsetting measures for fiscal 2019.

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