JB Hi-Fi (JBH) is a chain of electrical stores, selling leading brands of hi-fi, speakers, televisions, DVDs, cameras, car sound, home theatre, computers, white goods, portable audio and a variety of music, games and movies.
The company has been able to grow its sales over the last 5 years in what can only be described as one of the most difficult trading conditions for retailers in over 20 years.
JBH’s strategies for growth are simple: increase the number of stores, increase sales, and through that, increase profit. JBH’s expansion is not only in the Australian market, but also in New Zealand. Since entering the New Zealand market in early 2007, it has opened 13 stores.
Margin growth and consumer optimism
JBH’s 1H13 results impressed on several fronts, with sales revenue reaching $1.3 billion, 3.1% higher than the 1H12 result. Its net profit climbed to $82.1 million, a 3% improvement compared to the prior corresponding half.
JBH’s most surprising result was its gross margin, which increased by 28 basis points. This was a very impressive result considering that the gross margin of its competitor, Harvey Norman, fell by 260 basis points over the same period.
We think that the operating environment for retailers is looking more optimistic, with the Westpac Consumer Sentiment Index returning to a reading of over 100 in the last survey.
In its latest reading, the consumer...