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Warehouse Group grows through lockdown, enjoys record first-half profit

New Zealand’s The Warehouse Group reported record results across all of its brands in the first half, revealing an net profit after tax of NZ$55 million – 88.5 per cent higher than the corresponding period.

The Warehouse, Noel Leeming, Warehouse Stationery and Torpedo7 all saw strong growth during the 26 weeks to January 31, contributing to the total sales growth of 7.4 per cent to $1.8 billion.

“Despite the interruptions to trading by the Auckland Covid-19 level 3 lockdown of last August, the business performed well, demonstrating the ability to adapt and flex amid business interruptions,” Warehouse Group chief executive Nick Grayston said.

“As a result… we were able to drive significant gross profit improvement and cost leverage.”

The Warehouse business saw sales improve 3 per cent to $967.3 million, though during the lockdown period sales were down 17.4 per cent.

Warehouse Stationery delivered first half sales of $136.6 million, 2.1 per cent up on the prior period, while sales at Noel Leeming rose 15.7 per cent to $593.2 million.

“We were particularly pleased with Noel Leeming’s online sales increases of 85 per cent and a 93 per cent rise in Click & Collect fulfilment with the majority utilising our 1-hour service, showing customers are increasingly comfortable with online purchases since Covid-19 lockdowns,” Grayston said.

Torpedo7 also saw strong online growth at 66 per cent, while total sales rose 29 per cent to $84.9 million.

The business’ NZ-centric online marketplace The Market continues to grow – with online sessions up 268 per cent since the same period last year.

And, given the strong success of its stable of brands, The Warehouse Group announced it will pay an interim dividend for the FY21 half-year of 13 cents per share.

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