SEOUL, May 12 (Yonhap) — South Korean e-commerce giant Coupang Inc. said Thursday its first-quarter operating loss narrowed sharply from a year earlier thanks to record sales.
Its operating loss stood at US$205.7 million in the January-March period, down 23 percent from a year earlier, the New York-listed e-commerce behemoth said in a regulatory filing.
The drastic improvement came as its sales reached a quarterly high in the three-month period amid a global economic recovery from the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.
Coupang’s top line amounted to $5.12 billion in the first quarter, up 32 percent from a year earlier and an all-time high for a quarter. The previous quarterly sales record was $5.08 billion registered in the fourth quarter of 2021.
“Coupang’s sales growth was two times more than that for the domestic e-commerce market in the first quarter,” the company said. “The reduced loss resulted from its efforts to improve profitability.”
The e-commerce titan stressed that the company’s adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) were in the black for its product commerce division for the first time in its history.
Coupang said the company was able to raise its profit ratio through the improvement and automation of various processes, coupled with the optimization of its supply network.
In March last year, Coupang made its landmark debut on the New York stock market as part of efforts to expand its global presence.