Michael Hill’s first-half sales up 4 per cent

(Source: Michael Hill/Facebook)

Jeweller Michael Hill‘s sales rose 4 per cent year over year in the first half, amid growth in Australia and Canada.

The retailer witnessed an Australian sales increase of 10.2 per cent, driven by the inclusion of the Bevilles brand. However, Michael Hill noted that Bevilles has not met sales expectations and was further impacted by the relocation announcement and systems integration process.

Michael Hill said that its Canadian business was its best-performing segment despite its sales climbing by only 0.5 per cent.

Meanwhile, New Zealand sales dipped 10.3 per cent, reflecting weaker discretionary spending, lower consumer credit approval rates nationwide, and higher serious retail crime events impacting various stores.

In the first 45 weeks, the group’s sales jumped 4.7 per cent as its Australian segment improved by 12.3 per cent. Its New Zealand and Canadian segments fell 11.1 per cent and 0.4 per cent, respectively.

“There is no doubt that consumer discretionary spend, and the fine jewellery category in particular, remain under pressure due to macroeconomic forces,” said Daniel Bracken, Michael Hill International MD and CEO.

“Higher interest rates are leading to a sustained and prolonged decline in consumer spending. Looking forward, as interest rates moderate, we anticipate sales and margin recovery.”

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