Premier sees improvements

Solomon Lew and Mark McInnes oPremier Investments has reported net profit after tax of $56.8 million for the year ended January 24, 2015.

Total sales for the group were up 4.8 per cent to $490.8 million and like for like sales were up 1.1 per cent across the group, with five brands experiencing positive like for like sales, including Jay Jays, which is now performing strongly.

Premier Retail reported earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) of $70.0 million, up 13.8 per cent on 1H14.

Online channels delivered above market growth, with sales up 23 per cent.

EBIT margin improved 112 bps to 14.3 per cent as a result of better assortments, new direct sourcing initiatives and disciplined management of currency given the weaker Australian dollar.

Premier chairman, Solomon Lew said the result is “excellent”, in a challenging market in which consumer confidence remains volatile.

“Management has achieved top line sales growth, disciplined cost management and continued margin expansion,” said Lew.

“We continue to make investments to support the potential of our key growth brands, Smiggle and Peter Alexander, both in local and overseas markets. We are delighted with the performance of our Smiggle UK business – today we have 19 stores trading and we plan to open a further 14 stores this calendar year.

Premier Retail CEO, Mark McInnes said the company is pleased with the progress we have made during the half, particularly in the continued implementation of growth plans for Peter Alexander and Smiggle and the continued turnaround of Jay Jays.

“We are also pleased to have delivered strong margin expansion in the context of a weaker Australian dollar and mixed consumer confidence. Our relentless and continued implementation of our six point transformation strategy has been instrumental in achieving today’s result.”

Premier Retail’s profit before tax increased 14.7 per cent to $78.7 million, reflecting strong sales growth, margin expansion, and a well managed cost base in addition to the contribution of new growth platforms identified for online, Peter Alexander, and Smiggle.

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