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Finnair, Stockmann and Sanoma sagged in second quarter, but others thrived

More Finnish firms posted Q2 losses, but home improvement firms showed higher profits since the pandemic began.

Autio Helsinki-Vantaan lentoasema.
Helsinki Airport was nearly deserted in May. Image: Tiina Jutila / Yle

A raft of Finnish companies published results from the second quarter of the year on Friday, showing a range of impacts from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Flag carrier Finnair's result plunged to 174.3 million euros in the red for the April-June period. In the same period of last year, it made a profit of 47.2 million euros.

The airline's turnover sank by 91.3 percent from a year earlier to 68.6 million euros.

"Finnair’s second quarter was characterised by a single factor: the Covid-19 pandemic. As we anticipated, it resulted in our capacity dropping to three per cent, as during the second quarter we only maintained flight connections that are critical for Finland. This was also directly reflected in the number of passengers, revenue and result," Finnair CEO Topi Manner said in a statement.

The review period "also included many glimmers of hope," he added, noting that demand for cargo-only flights remained high throughout the quarter.

Pandemic bruises Stockmann

Department store chain Stockmann's adjusted result for April-June shows a loss of 1.8 million euros, compared to a profit of 16.2 million euros a year ago. Turnover was down by nearly a quarter.

Still, CEO Jari Latvanen was upbeat in the retailer's half-year financial report.

"The lifting of coronavirus restrictions has increased customer flows at Stockmann department stores and Lindex stores since late May. The strong growth in the online sales of both Stockmann and Lindex continued in the second quarter," Latvanen said.

Meanwhile media group Sanoma, which owns Helsingin Sanomat and many other newspapers, magazines and media outlets, showed only a comparatively mild slump.

Its operating profit dipped to 54 million euros compared to last year's 60 million. Turnover slipped to 246 million euros from 260 million a year earlier.

Konecranes, home repair firms gain

On the other hand, Konecranes boosted its profit in the spring and early summer, up to 42.7 million euros from last year's 38 million.

Paint manufacturer Tikkurila's profitability also improved dramatically. Profits were up by nearly half, rising to 34.7 million euros from 23.2 million in the same period of 2019.

Tikkurila CEO Elisa Markula cited "exceptionally strong consumer sales in all of Tikkurila's main market areas," especially in June, with homebound homeowners apparently focusing on sprucing up their properties.

The home improvement boom may have also helped piping manufacturer Uponor, where profits soared by 43 percent, and renovation firm Consti – which saw its profits climb to 2.4 million euros compared to just 100,000 euros in Q2 of last year.

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