Musgrave Group has posted a 16% fall in pre-tax profits and warned that challenging trading conditions have led to a €131m asset write-down.

The Irish company, which owns the Londis and Budgens brands in the UK, posted figures of €60m for the year to December 2013.

The figure was down from €72m the previous year despite sales across all operations remaining in line with 2012 at €4.8bn.

Chris Martin, Musgrave Group’s chief executive, said all its markets continued to experience difficult economic conditions in 2013, which had impacted on consumer spending.

But while its Irish brands out-performed a flat marketplace, with SuperValu, Centra, Daybreak and MarketPlace all growing, sales in its UK operations fell 3%.

The company blamed a growth strategy that had not delivered profitable sales but said it was committed to the UK market and had appointed new managing director Peter Ridler to lead a turnaround.

Martin said: “Great Britain was tough for all grocery retailers where the market is going through fundamental and permanent structural change, similar to what the Irish market experienced three years ago.

“Our GB business underperformed in 2013 and this is being addressed through a turnaround programme which is already underway.”

Musgrave said the €131m UK writedown included €78m of goodwill stemming from its purchase of Londis and Budgens, plus £37m for tangible assets and €16m for “onerous” property obligations.