Jewellery maker Pandora's first-quarter profit plummets amid lockdownsJewellery maker Pandora's first-quarter profit plummets amid lockdowns
FILE PHOTO: A general view of the Pandora shop in Riga,

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) – Jewellery maker Pandora reported a 41% decline in first-quarter operating profit on Tuesday but said it was encouraged by higher online sales and the reopening of stores in Germany and some other some countries.

Some 90% of its 2,746 stores were shut during the quarter due to the coronavirus lockdowns, the Copenhagen-based company said.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has had a material negative impact on the financial performance in the quarter, initially in China and subsequently in all other key markets during March,” Pandora said in a statement.

Its earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) and excluding restructuring costs were 638 million Danish crowns ($93.3 million), which topped the 622 million crowns expected by 11 analysts in a poll compiled by Pandora.

Pandora said it had secured funding to sustain the closure of all of its physical stores throughout 2020. That included bank credits worth 3 billion crowns and a plan to sell 8 million treasury shares in an accelerated bookbuild.

Pandora withdrew its financial guidance for 2020 and halted a planned share buyback in mid-March.

(Reporting by Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen; editing by Christian Schmollinger and Jason Neely)