Half yearly results cast a cloud over Sunbeam

By Claire Reilly

GUD Holdings, the parent company of appliance manufacturer Sunbeam, announced its half yearly results today, posting a 10 per cent decline in overall earnings before interest and tax (EBIT).

While group sales were up 4 per cent for the six months ended 31 December 2011, sales revenue in the company’s consumer division (which incorporates Sunbeam and Oates cleaning products) was down 8 per cent to $117.6 million, while underlying EBIT fell from $22.7 million to $19.3 million – a slip of 15 per cent.

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“Businesses exposed to the Australian retail trade continue to experience a difficult trading environment,” said GUD Holdings managing director, Ian Campbell. “This is evident in the results from our Consumer business, where we reduced prices to maintain competitiveness and volumes.”

According to the results released by the company, the sales decline in consumer products was due in part to “Sunbeam Australia reducing prices to maintain volumes and shelf exposure, in an increasingly competitive small appliance market.

“Sunbeam has been able to maintain its market leadership position despite a small decline in unit sales in the face of growing housebrand competition. Sunbeam expects that further price reductions will not be necessary in the second half despite prevailing tight retail conditions.”

According to Campbell, GUD Holdings will “continue to invest in new product activity to assist in offsetting these competitive conditions.”

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