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Woolworths posts impressive profit

Feb 14 2013 09:12 Reuters


Company Data

TRUWORTHS INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [JSE:TRU]

Last traded 72.73
Change 0.43
% Change 0.01
Cumulative volume 1573432
Market cap 30.74bn

Last Updated: 23/07/2014 at 04:28. Prices are delayed by 15 minutes. Source: McGregor BFA

WOOLWORTHS HOLDINGS LIMITED [JSE:WHL]

Last traded 83.26
Change 1.61
% Change 0.02
Cumulative volume 1654687
Market cap 70.52bn

Last Updated: 23/07/2014 at 04:27. Prices are delayed by 15 minutes. Source: McGregor BFA

SHOPRITE HOLDINGS LIMITED [JSE:SHP]

Last traded 164.61
Change -0.99
% Change -0.01
Cumulative volume 420945
Market cap 94.30bn

Last Updated: 23/07/2014 at 04:27. Prices are delayed by 15 minutes. Source: McGregor BFA

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Johannesburg - Retailer Woolworths Holdings [JSE:WHL] reported a 21% rise in first-half profit chiefly as a result of contributions from its recent acquisition in Australia.

Woolworths, which sells food and clothes, said headline earnings per share totalled 164.2 cents in the six months to end-December compared with 135.7 a year earlier.

The results were boosted Woolworths' purchase last August of Australian fashion retailer Witchery Group in a $181m deal to expand into the Asia-Pacific region.

Woolworths, similar in style and products to Britain's Marks & Spencer Group said total sales rose 18% to R16.7bn with its Australian business delivering a 55.6% surge in sales. 

South African retailers have been popular among investors for more than a year due to the credit-led shopping spree, but their shares have tumbled in recent weeks on growing worries consumers are too heavily indebted to sustain recent levels of sales growth.

Woolworths is expected to fare better than rivals such as Truworths International [JSE:TRU] and Shoprite Holdings [JSE:SHP] as it serves the more resilient high-income consumers.

"We expect sales growth to be broadly in line with the first half," the company said in a statement.

Shares in Woolworths are down about 7% so far this year, largely in line with the broad sell-off of local retailers but underperforming a near 5% gain on the blue-chip JSE Top 40 - (Tradeable) [JSE:J200] index.    

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