Emma & Roe shines as Michael Hill’s US arm struggles

michael hillA raft of store openings has helped boost jewellery retailer Michael Hill’s group sales, with subsidiary brand Emma & Roe recording sales growth of 70.4 per cent.

Group sales were up 5.5 per cent over the last nine months for the jewellery retailer, which opened 18 stores during the period, eight Michael Hill stores and ten for Emma & Roe.

Canadian operations saw same store sales growth of 7.0 per cent however the US business struggled and finished the nine months down 11 per cent for same stores.

“After some management changes in September last year, we are in the process of rebuilding this test market under the leadership of our North American president, Brett Halliday,” the jewellery group said in a statement.

The Australian arm of the Michael Hill brand recorded 0.8 per cent growth in the period while the New Zealand segment finished down 1.4 per cent.

Michael Hill plans to open eight new stores in the fourth quarter of the current financial year, primarily in the Canadian market.

The Emma & Roe’s store sales growth of 70.4 per cent was tempered by a decline of one per cent in same store sales. Ten new stores were opened during the period across Queensland and New South Wales. “While the drop in same store sales is disappointing, the brand is still young and evolving so momentum will be bumpy for some time,” the statement said.

“We are establishing a good foothold in the large and lucrative New South Wales market and this will allow for additional marketing activity to be funded in the year ahead.”

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