Advertise with

 Lower inflation helped the retailer sell more food, but its clothing division had a bad winter.
Lower inflation helped the retailer sell more food, but its clothing division had a bad winter.

Woolworths to return to profit


By Robert Laing - Nov 15th 2018, 14:16

Woolworths will return to profit in the first half of its 2019 financial year following the loss caused by its R7bn impairment of Australian department store chain David Jones in the matching period.


The retailer said in a sales update for the 20 weeks to November 11 that it expected its interim earnings per share (EPS) to recover from the 505.9c loss it reported for the first half of its 2018 financial year.

Woolworths said in that it would issue a trading statement for the 26 weeks to December 23, giving more precise guidance on its interim earnings once it obtains reasonable certainty.

The group’s overall sales in the first 20 weeks of its 2019 financial year grew 2.7% from the matching period, a slight improvement on the 2.6% growth it reported in its sales update a year ago.

Measured in “constant currency” — keeping the contributions from Australian subsidiaries David Jones and Country Road in Australian dollars rather than converting to rand — sales grew 3.6%.

David Jones grew sales by 2.9% after suffering a 5.3% sales decline in the first 20 weeks of the previous financial year. The sales update did not make it clear if this was measured in rand or Australian dollars.

Country Road grew sales 3.4%, a slowdown from the 8.3% reported in the sales update Woolworths issued in November 2017.

In its South African operations, Woolworths’ food division grew sales 7.2% — a slowdown from 9.3% a year ago — while its “fashion, beauty and home” division suffered a 3.3% decline in sales after managing 0.7% growth in the first 20 weeks of the previous financial year.

“While sales for the first quarter ended September 23 were affected by a significantly smaller winter sale, regular sales in October, particularly in womenswear, have shown a positive trend,” the sales update said.

Taking food inflation into account, which slowed to 1% from 4.5% in the matching period, Woolworths’ food division beat the previous year.

The trading statement said this was thanks to “volume growth driven by low inflation and higher levels of promotion”.
Business Live 

Read more about: woolworths | sales | retailer | retail | david jones

Related News

Transforming the customer retail experience with future fit technology
26/06/2019 - 09:19
Although the South African retail sphere is currently hindered by a slow economy and weak consumer confidence, technology is presenting opportunities to radically transform the customer experience and boost bottom line sales.

New Look losses mount as Brexit, rain keeps shoppers away
26/06/2019 - 09:03
British fashion chain New Look reported a bigger annual pretax loss, hurt by a large charge, while Brexit woes and rainy weather kept many shoppers out of its stores.

Pick n Pay and FoodForward SA aim for 2 million meals with Mandela Day Food Drive
25/06/2019 - 12:57
Pick n Pay and FoodForward SA have launched their third annual Mandela Day Food Drive and invite all South Africans to contribute towards the ambitious goal of collecting 500 tonnes of food – enough to produce two million meals.

Woolworths Beauty goes 100% vegan
25/06/2019 - 09:08
Woolworths is driving the vegan lifestyle into the mainstream in South Africa with its announcement that its WBeauty ranges are 100% vegan. This is in step with worldwide trends, where more and more consumers are turning to veganism, which excludes the consumption of all animal products and products with animal-derived ingredients, as a more ethical lifestyle that is gentler on the Earth.

France's Carrefour takes steps to exit China with deal
24/06/2019 - 15:02
Carrefour, Europe’s largest retailer, took a decisive step on Sunday towards a full exit of the Chinese market by selling a majority stake of its activities in the country to