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JB Hi-Fi New Zealand falters while group grows

JB Hi-Fi Group chief executive Richard Murray

Electronics retailer JB Hi-Fi has seen shares jump 8.3 per cent following a strong first quarter showing, with total group sales growth of 4.7 per cent and comparable sales growth of 3.7 per cent.

However, the business’ New Zealand arm didn’t reach the highs of first quarter FY19, with total and comparable sales growth of 3.8 per cent compared to 4 per cent total and 9.8 per cent comparable in the prior corresponding period.

The business reaffirmed it would reach its FY20 sales target of A$7.25 billion, including $240 million in New Zealand. 

“As we have said before, retailing is a dynamic and exciting industry and JB Hi-Fi and The Good Guys are market leaders in their respective sectors,” JB Hi-Fi Group chief executive Richard Murray said at the group’s AGM on Thursday.

“In JB Hi-Fi and The Good Guys, we believe we have two unique and relevant brands, particularly in the eyes of our customers. 

“With a customer focused business model built on a diverse product offering, deep relationships with our suppliers, a high quality multichannel offer and exceptional customer service, we are confident we will maintain our market leading competitive position.”

The retail group experienced pressure from shareholder groups last week over the implementation of its remuneration report, which the Australian Shareholders’ Association and ISS Governance Services recommending a vote against the report.

However, the vote passed on Thursday, with 82 per cent voting to adopt the revised report, and 17 per cent voting against – avoiding the 25 per cent against vote that would have triggered a first strike against the JB Hi-Fi board. 

Last year, 21 per cent of JB Hi-Fi shareholders voted against the report, prompting fears of a potential first strike at this year’s meeting. 

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