By Patrick Avenell
SYDNEY: JB Hi-Fi chief executive officer Richard Uechtritz has released an encouraging, albeit concise, report to the Australian Securities Exchange on the retail group’s sales progress through the first two months of the current financial year.
In the statement, Uechtritz says that sales have been out-performing expectations, and that good margins have been retained through minimising costs. Compared to July and August 2007, JB Hi-Fi’s sales and earnings have improved.
“Sales for the first quarter were on budget and earnings for July and August 2008 were ahead of budget, as margins remain solid combined with good cost control,” wrote Uechtritz in a statement. “Both sales and earnings are well up on the previous year.”
Uechtritz further notes that the six new JB Hi-Fi stores that have so far been opened in FY09 “are trading well”.
JB Hi-Fi joins Harvey Norman in having posted two-month sales and earnings reports to the ASX. It will be interesting to see if other listed retail outlets, such as Clive Peeters, David Jones and Woolworths, owner of Dick Smith, will also post announcements to the ASX.
The announcement of sales and earnings increases did not help the retailer’s share price, however, with the listed company trading at $10.60, down 50 cents, shortly after 11 am this morning.
In a sign of the incredible volatility in the current marketplace, JB Hi-Fi shares recovered today to close up 80 cents at $11.90.