Surplus for Smiths City

Smiths City websiteChristchurch-based Smiths City Group has reported 124 per cent profit increase for the six months to October 2014.

After taxation, the $4.2 million operating surplus showed strong growth compared with last year’s $1.9 million.

Operating revenues for the six months were $109.5 million, up 0.9 per cent on the previous year of $108.5 million.

The company has seen some important personnel changes with CEO and MD, Rick Hellings, to stand down from his position in 2015. A search is currently underway for his replacement. Meanwhile, Sheena Henderson was appointed to the board in November, replacing Sarah Ottrey, who resigned in March last year.

According to Hellings, Smiths City operates in a very aggressive and competitive sector and, subsequently margins came under pressure in 2014.

Smiths City sells both electrical appliances and furniture, however, the smaller appliance only stores are unable to stock wide ranges of electrical products.

Two standalone Powerstores have been closed in the past 12 months, with the Richmond Powerstore closing this month. The repair and reopening of the flagship Smiths City store in Colombo St, Christchurch in October, brought the Christchurch business up to full strength, with the company to continue to look for growth opportunities in the North Island.

Of its main retail brands, Smiths City, Powerstore, L V Martin, and Furniture Concepts, the biggest brand is Smiths City, which provides 75 per cent of retail turnover from its 17 stores in the South Island and 10 North Island stores.

Four clearance centres support both Smiths City and Powerstore, with both new and used product and product service operations across both islands.

Furniture Concepts consists of two South Island stores in Christchurch and Queenstown, and is a relatively new, upper end operation with significant growth targeted over the next three years.

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