Schuitema, the Dutch retailer, has posted an 8.4% drop in turnover for the first quarter of 2009 due to the closure of a number of C1000 stores.

Turnover for the 16-week period dropped to EUR945m (US$1.28bn) from EUR1.03bn in the same period of 2008.

Operating profit also fell in the quarter to EUR18.2m, a decrease of 37% from the comparable period of 2008, mainly due to a drop in the number C1000 stores.

At the end of the first quarter, the number C1000 stores dropped by 70 to 369. Three “unprofitable” stores were disposed of and two were transferred to Ahold.

C1000 retail sales for the period dropped to EUR1.14bn, a decrease of 9.9% from 2008. The average weekly sales per store amounted to EUR194,000, an increase of 6.6% compared to the same period in 2008 (EUR182,000).

Tom Heidman, chairman of the board of Schuitema, said: “The decline in turnover in the first quarter is a result of the decrease in the number of C1000 stores. The average weekly sales per store was higher compared to last year. This increase is including the result of successful promotional activities during the first quarter.”