Room for improvement: Wesfarmers

Published on Fri, 17/08/2012, 12:00:57

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Coles has help driven Wesfarmers to a achieving a full-year net profit after tax of $2.1 billion, up 10.6 per cent from the previous year.

Coles’ earnings before interest and tax accelerated by 16.3 per cent to $1.3 million, building on the 21.1 per cent earnings growth achieved in the prior year. This was mainly driven by its ‘Down Down’ and fresh produce “Super Specials’ campaign, as well as the reinvigoration of its flybuys loyalty program.

The company’s other retail businesses also managed to pull through on a positive note. Bunnings’ earnings increased 4.9 per cent to $841 million, Kmart saw a 31.4 per cent growth to $268 million and while Officeworks experienced heavy price deflation its earnings increased 6.3 per cent for the year to $85 million.

However, Target was hit by a $40 million supply chain restructure that saw its earnings for the year in line with the prior year at $244 million. It also experience generally challenging trading conditions during the year, particularly in consumer electronics, resulting in a decline in revenue of 1.2 per cent.

From an overall perspective, Wesfarmers’ retail business recorded combined earnings for the year of 10.3 per cent to $2.7 billion, more than double the rate of revenue growth.

Managing director Richard Goyder said all divisions showed improvements in underlying performance and strong growth.

“During the year all of our retail businesses worked hard to deliver better value and improved merchandise offers for customers, while investing to renew and grow their store networks and improve supply chains,” he said.

“These initiatives were rewarded with increasing customer numbers and units sold, more than offsetting price deflation impacts, including our reinvestment in lowering prices.”

The turnaround momentum in Coles, Kmart and Officeworks is expected to continue, with each business well positioned for the next phase of growth.


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