RETAIL: Encouraging Signals Come Through, Says Foschini
Recent Gauteng Business News
But, despite the reduced interest rate and inflation environment, trading conditions will remain challenging, according to the Foschini Group which notched up sales of over R8,6-billion last year and is one of the largest mass market credit retailers in the country.
Doug Murray, Foschini Group CEO told the 73rd Annual General Meeting in Parow that although trading conditions remained challenging, sales for the first five months of this financial year have been encouraging.
“Total sales have grown by 12,9% over the previous period with same stores sales growth of 8,6%. Particularly pleasing is the growth in clothing of 12,4% following its strong growth of 12% in the corresponding period last year.”
He said cellphone sales grew by 23,3% and homewares by 16,8% with jewellery increasing by 10,7% and cosmetics by 6,8% over the same period last year.
“Our retail debtors’ book is performing satisfactorily in the current climate and the quality of the book continues to improve.”
He reiterated that in line with the group’s strategy of investing for the long term, the group would continue to open new stores in certain of its formats that were currently under-represented. Its overall trading space was anticipated to increase by approximately 7% in the current year which augured well for ongoing growth.
Looking ahead, Murray said that while continued unemployment in the economy remained a potential risk, the board remained cautiously optimistic regarding trading for the remainder of this year. He said, the second half of the year, as always, is heavily dependant on Christmas trading, which will largely determine the performance of the group in the second half.
Business News Sector Tags: Retail|