By Patrick Avenell

SYDNEY: As a consequence of its poor interim profit report, which included an 89.6 per cent drop in profit, Clive Peeters has shelved its plans for expansion, at least for the short term.

Although the retailer maintains that its goal is to have 100 stores Australia-wide some time in the near future, it has accepted the reality that these plans must be now preempted by the need to survive the current economic crisis.

As a result, the two recent store openings, in Coburg and Townsville, will remain its newest stores until retail conditions improve.

“All new stores are on hold  until the retail cycle improves,” wrote a Clive Peeters representative to the Australian Securities Exchange.

The listed retail group is stressing that this is a short term strategy, and that the overall long term plans have not been drastically altered.

“The Group’s long term objective remains to open a minimum of four new stores per annum, but it has the proven ability to exceed this having grown from 9 to 48 stores between September 2005 and December 2008.

“The future store potential is for in excess of 100 stores nationally.”