Country Road challenged

Country Road has recorded an 11.6 per cent fall in full year net profits to $16.1 million, with its chief executive describing retail conditions as "extremely difficult".

Australasian sales for fiscal 2012 plunged 2.6 per cent to $355.2 million.

Total retail sales fell 0.7 per cent to $287.8 million, while concessions recorded an 8.1 per cent rise to $131 million.

Country Road chief executive Howard Goldberg said the retailer had closed a number of unprofitable concession and retail outlet stores.

This, combined with an improved replenishment model, was credited for helping the group grow its margin despite the challenging conditions.

"Retail trading conditions in the second half in Australasia continued to be extremely difficult as consumers cut back on their discretionary spending.

"We continued with our strategy of less discounting in Country Road and Trenery stores and concessions."

Chairman Ian Moir said the group's proposed acquisition of Witchery Group was still on track to be finalised by October, 2012.

"The proposed acquisition is expected to deliver an attractive portfolio of brands, greater scale, diversified revenue streams and industry leading margins to shareholders."

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