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Saturday 25

March, 2017 1:07 AM



Online and Oz help Kathmandu sales

Online and Oz help Kathmandu sales

Kathmandu's CEO says customer confidence in Australia is okay, as the adventure gear retailer posted a 6.4pct rise in first-half profit.

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By AAP 21.03.2017 04:19 PM

Buoyant sales in Australia and online have helped adventure gear retailer Kathmandu lift first-half profit 6.4 per cent to $NZ10 million ($A9.1 million).

Net profit for the six months to January 31 rose from $NZ9.4 million over the same period a year earlier, with sales up 0.2 per cent to $NZ196.3 million.

Online sales were also up by almost one fifth, comprising 7.4 per cent of total sales.

Chief executive Xavier Simonet said the results were broadly in line with the group's expectations despite a $NZ4 million hit from foreign currency movements.

"We have worked hard to minimise the impact of currency on our gross margin through sourcing negotiations, product newness, price action, improved stock management and cost control," he said.

"Maintaining gross margin and operating efficiency will continue to be a key focus."

Sales were up six per cent to $A121.1 million in Australia, where the company has boosted engagement with customers though its loyalty program and cut operational costs.

Mr Simonet said he hadn't noticed a change in Australian customers' behaviour amid reports the nation's consumers are losing confidence in the economy.

The latest ANZ-Roy Morgan Australian Consumer Confidence survey, released on Tuesday, painted a gloomy picture, with confidence tumbling for a third consecutive week to hit its lowest point since last April.

"From our perspective, customer confidence across Australia and New Zealand is okay," Mr Simonet said.

"We have not seen recently any change in the way customers behave."

Kathmandu closed three retail stores in the United Kingdom in the past year and will instead focus on growing its business internationally through wholesale partnerships.

Mr Simonet said he hoped negotiations with potential retail partners in the UK and Germany would be finalised by the end of 2017.

Kathmandu shares closed up 0.5 cents at $1.78.

KATHMANDU FIRST HALF PROFIT RESULTS

Net profit up 6.4 pct to $NZ10m ($A9.1m)

Revenue up 0.2 pct to $NZ196.3m ($178.7m

Dividend up one cent to $NZ 4.0 cents per share, unfranked for Australian shareholders

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