As Dick Smiths sales contract, prompting CEO Nick Abboud to take the red pen to prices, his direct competitor JB Hi-Fi CEO Richard Murray, is exhibiting a calm demeanour. This comes despite Murray’s concession yesterday that the appliance market will remain aggressive as some retailers “drive market share in the lead up to Christmas.”
JB Hi-Fi says low turnover in middle management roles are a major obstacle in its push to improve the number of women in its company, as it fails to achieve gender equity targets set out in 2012. However, the retailer is reportedly set to turn this around with an action plan with part time and flexible work practices and regular pay reviews.
There is no animosity between JB Hi Fi and Dick Smith, according to JB’s CEO Richard Murray, a statement which is most likely true, given that both these retailers have a common target in their sights: David Jones and Myer. According to Murray, the industry can be assured that JB is determined to ‘own’ the portable appliance category, despite its deep legacy in technology and gadgets.
A significant industry shift is underway with today’s news that JB Hi Fi is already selling small appliances inside four of its eponymous JB Hi Fi stores. The move comes just a week after Dick Smith announced the almost identical strategy to range small appliances (Connected Home) inside several of its existing Dick Smith stores.
JB Hi Fi has strengthened its senior executive team by bringing on Kevin Ramsdale as Marketing Director and Simon Page as Chief Information Officer during September 2015. Ramsdale has over 20 years commercial experience across a range of industries, while Page has over 15 years in various technology roles both in Australia and internationally.