31 Jan 2014

Annual sales at Briscoes up nearly 7%

8:02 am on 31 January 2014

Strong Christmas trading helped to push annual sales at Briscoes nearly 7 percent higher.

Briscoes Store in Taranaki St, Wellington.

Briscoes Store in Taranaki St, Wellington. Photo: RNZ

The group, which also owns Rebel Sports and Living & Giving, says unaudited sales for the 52 weeks to 26 January rose to $483.6 million.

Homeware sales lifted more than 6 percent while sporting goods rose 7.7 percent.

Managing director Rod Duke said Christmas trading was particularly strong with sales topping $150.5 million.

He said Briscoes is expecting its full year net profit to exceed $33 million, which represents a rise of at least 9 percent on the previous year's result.

Mr Duke said that despite margins becoming tighter and less profitable, he's pleased with the result.

Audited results will be published on 6 March.

Duke says he's 'cautiously optimistic'

Rod Duke said he remains cautiously optimistic about the economy this year, despite predictions of bumper growth.

He said despite its strong result, many retailers were doing it tough and he was not so sure what 2014 will hold.

Mr Duke said although Briscoes had done well there were some heavy hitters in the listed retailers that had done very poorly, so it was not the same for everybody.

He said the company plans to open six new Briscoes and Rebel Sports stores over the next 18 months and to dramatically push online sales, which almost doubled last year.

The Living and Giving brand did not do so well last year, resulting in the closure of three stores. Mr Duke said he does not hesitate in closing any store that doesn't perform.