Russo to head new retail division
Bunnings, Kmart, Target and Officeworks helped Wesfarmers to deliver a 1.2% increase in the first-half. The cdompnay recorded a profit of $1.39 billion, up from $1.38 billion in the same period last year, but behind the record $1.43 billion result in 2014.
Sales rose 4.7% to $33.5 billion.
The department stores, which are undergoing a significant restructure, showed an improvement, with Kmart reporting earnings up 10.4% and Target brand producing a 5.7% increase on earnings on a 2% rise in sales.
Wesfarmers also revealed a shake-up in management with Kmart and Target being trussed together in a new division under the leadership of veteran Kmart boss Guy Russo (pictured).
The home improvement division, Bunnings, continued its perennially strong performance with revenue growth of 10.9%, while Officeworks was not too far behind, with sales up 9.1%.
Overall earnings across the retail business grew by $182 million, a result which was almost entirely eroded by the $158 million earnings slump in the much smaller industrial and resources division.