JB Hi-Fi Group has continued to ride positive trading to an impressive half-year result, with net profit and earnings per share up 86.2 per cent to $341.5 million (AU$317.7 million) and AU 276.5 cents per share.
The electronics group, which operates JB Hi-Fi in Australia and New Zealand as well as The Good Guys, drove sales up 23.7 per cent to $5.27 billion for the six months to 31 December, and did not receive any government wage subsidies during the period.
“Our continued focus on the customer, and investments in our online business and our supply chain, have enabled us to seamlessly meet our customers’ increased demands both instore and online,” said JB Hi-Fi chief executive Richard Murray.
And, at a time when more Aussies are jumping online to shop, online sales grew 161 per cent on the same half-year period last year to $729.6 million, with online sales doubling in Australia and up 69 per cent in New Zealand.
Online sales also grew 86 per cent at The Good Guys, reaching $159 million.
In Australia, the business saw sales overall sales growth of 23.3 per cent to A$3.36 billion, driven by an increased consumer demand for electronics and home appliances. At The Good Guys, which saw sales up 26.4 per cent to A$1.45 billion, the ‘nesting’ trend drove a spike in sales for new refrigerators, portable appliances, laundry, floorcare, television and computers.
Kiwis’ spending patterns weren’t all that different, with sales growing 9.1 per cent to $144.9 million off the back of visual, games hardware, small appliances and computers, at JB Hi-Fi New Zealand.
And the strong sales seen during the half have continued into the new year, with total sales growth seen at JB Hi-Fi Australia (17.3 per cent), JB Hi-Fi New Zealand (21.7 per cent), and The Good Guys (14.1 per cent).
However, the business was reticent to provide targeted guidance for the remainder of the year, due to the uncertainty created by the pandemic.
While Australia and New Zealand have managed the Covid-19 crisis very well on a global scale, questions remain about what the upcoming changes to JobSeeker, JobKeeper, and the reliance on JobMaker, will mean for the economy at large.
“In what is an uncertain environment we will continue to adapt and respond and, with a number of opportunities ahead of us, we remain excited by the outlook of the business,” Murray said.