Jewelry retailer Michael Hill saw net profit boost 82 per cent to $42 million (AU$39 million) in the six months to 27 December 2020, while same store sales rose just 6.3 per cent to $336 million.
However, the business estimates it lost more than 3,700 days of trade due to store closures, leading to a 2.9 per cent reduction in revenue for the half to $344.8 million.
“In spite of [these] obstacles, to deliver this significant performance improvement is truly outstanding,” said chief executive Daniel Bracken.
“[We’re] a business that has been focused on transformation, and while the global challenges have significantly impacted operations, and continue to do so on a daily basis, the performance across all metrics proves we have built strong foundations for growth.”
In Australia, same store sales increased 12 per cent to AU$174.2 million. Eleven stores were permanently closed during the period, and government mandated store closures in Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia impacted performance.
Likewise, in New Zealand the business closed three stores permanently, and grew same store sales 2.8 per cent to $73.7 million.
And heading into the second half, Michael Hill is continuing its ongoing focus on improving the fundamentals of the business, as well as evolving its product range to be led by its own-branded collections.
“The business entered the second half with clear strategic initiatives, strong retail execution and a robust financial position,” Bracken said.
“I’m encouraged by the strong start to H2 with same store sales for the group of 11 per cent [growth] for the first eight weeks.”