By Sarah Falson

HOMEBUSH WEST: Harvey Norman today announced that sales from the franchised Harvey Norman stores, commercial divisions and other sales outlets in Australia, New Zealand, Slovenia and Ireland were once again up from the previous period, this time at 16.8 per cent.

In the nine months ended 31 March 2007, like-for-like sales totaled $3.98 billion, compared with the same period ending 31 march 2006 in which sales increased by only 8.3 per cent.

The major money making sectors were electronics and appliances, according to Harvey Norman chief financial officer, Chris Mentis.

“Sales revenue continued to be strong in all major categories, particularly Audio Visual and Information Technology,” said Mentis.

On a quarterly basis, sales from the same franchised Harvey Norman departments (excluding Singapore and Rebel Sport Ltd), totaled $1.28 billion for the third quarter ended 31 March 2007. This is an increase of 17.2 per cent, compared with an increase of 10.8 per cent in the previous corresponding period.  

Harvey Norman sales profits have continued to rise, with the electronics and furniture retailer’s revenue jumping a whopping 35.4 per cent in the six months ending 31 December last year.

This dramatic increase was in part due to a one-off payment of $41 million to the retailer from FlexiGroup Limited, which supplies finance to consumers to buy IT equipment, televisions and whitegoods, along with a $27 million payment due to property revaluations.

Even so, Harveys profit was still up 14.2 per cent for this period, not taking into account these two one-off payments.