David Jones 4Q09 results better than expected

David Jones has just announced its sales results for the fourth quarter FY09 ending 25 July 2009. The company saw overall growth on a total sales basis and outperformed every other quarter of FY09.

According to the announcement issue to the ASX, David Jones reported Total Sales Revenue of $512.3 million for the fourth quarter, being the period 26 April to 25 July 2009. This represents 0.6 per cent growth on a Total Sales basis, when compared to the $509.1 million for 4Q FY08.

“As stated at the time of our Profit Guidance update on 30 June 2009, we experienced a significant positive shift in our trading performance in May and June,” said Mark McInnes, David Jones CEO.

“Due to the fact that we did not repeat the one-off clearance of excess inventory undertaken in July 2008, we expected our trading performance in July 2009 to be significantly down on last year. We were however pleasantly surprised to find that we traded better than expected in July.”

He also emphasised that the strong 4Q performance really turned around the whole year.

“Looking at all three months in the quarter, our trading performance in 4Q09 was much better than expected and demonstrates a sharp, positive turnaround in our performance for the year. It also demonstrates the continued resilience of the David Jones customer and brand strategy,” he said.

McInnes also highlighted that due to the strong result, it is maintaining its prior guidance for the future.

“Our pleasing sales performance in 4Q09, coupled with our tightly managed costs and well managed inventory and gross margin for the year, and the performance of our David Jones American Express card, has meant that we reaffirm our 2H09, FY09 and FY10 PAT growth guidance.

“Whilst the positive turnaround in trading performance in 4Q09 has been pleasing, there is still some uncertainty in relation to the future outlook. Having said that, our business has a track record of being ‘first in and first out’ of a downturn and our sensible investment in inventory, marketing and service means we are well positioned to leverage the upturn when it eventuates.”

In additional news the company also announced that it has appointed Georgia Chewing as the head of the David Jones Digital Marketing and e-tail business. She previously held the position of general manager, marketing.

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