Troubled wholesaler Makro is set to report a loss of £18m this year.

The figure is an improvement on last year, when the cash & carry wholesaler, which is in the process of being acquired by Booker, reported a loss of £20m.

In its half-year results last week, Booker also predicted Makro’s sales for the year to December 2012 would fall 9.1%, from £787m to £715m.

“£18m reflects some success in reducing costs, but little success by the Makro team in reinvigorating revenues/margins,” said Investec analyst Nicola Mallard.

Booker also said it was confident it could turn around Makro if the deal was approved by the OFT. A decision is expected imminently.

Although Makro was expected to report a trading loss of £10m in the three months to March 2013, this quarter was traditionally Makro’s least profitable due to low non-food sales, Booker said. Losses would be offset by £4m in synergy benefits.

In the year to March 2014, Booker said it expected group operating profit to rise by around £10m, based on an operating loss of £16m at Makro, offset by synergy benefits of £26m.