AUTO, leisure and sporting retailer Super Retail Group (SUL) has announced net profit after tax (NPAT) of $60.6 million for the first half of FY13, a 74 per cent increase on the previous corresponding period.
Managing director Peter Birtles (pictured) attributes the result to the group’s market leading position in a variety of leisure related retail categories and a commitment to continuing improvements.
“The sales and margin performance in each of the Supercheap Auto, BCF, Rebel and Amart businesses has continued to be very pleasing and the Rays Outdoors business has delivered a strong improvement when compared to the prior comparative period,” Birtles says.
“Gross margin performance across the Group has continued to be strong but this benefit has been partly offset by an increase in the cost of doing business due to increased investment in customer service in store, and the development of multi-channel capabilities; the rollout of smaller format stores and increases in occupancy related expenses.”
The company invested $73 million toward opening new stores, refurbishment of existing properties and multi-channel business capabilities.
Growth of the store network is a focus of the group’s business strategy, with 24 new stores opened during the first half of the year and 11 scheduled for the second half.
Birtles is confident about the outlook for the next six months and says that early figures reflect continued momentum.
“Like for like sales growth has been circa 5.5% in the Auto division, 10% in the Leisure division and 8% in the Sports division for the first seven weeks of the second half.”
Shareholders will receive a fully franked interim dividend of 17 cents per share payable on April 3, which is 31 per cent increase on the same period last year.
Super Retail Group shares were trading at $10.75 this afternoon, an increase of 1.03 per cent on the previous day’s close.
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