New Zealand's Warehouse third quarter sales down 1.9 percent

WELLINGTON, May 18 - The Directors of The Warehouse Group Limited reported sales for the third quarter ended 2 May 2010 of $376.0 million, down 1.9% on the corresponding period last year.

Warehouse
Photo: www.thewarehouse.co.nz

Group sales for the financial year to date were $1.29 billion, down 0.9% on the same period last year.

The Red Sheds achieved third quarter sales of $323.8 million, down 2.6% compared to the third quarter last year and year to date sales of $1.14 billion, down 1.8%. On a like for like basis, adjusting for the timing effects of last year's 53rd trading week, third quarter same store sales was down 3.3%.

Commenting on sales performance for the quarter, Group Chief Executive Officer, Ian Morrice says ""the sales shortfall against the third quarter last year was almost entirely due to a continued contraction in the music and DVD market and a very slow start to winter with unseasonably warm weather impacting key categories such as winter apparel and heating".

Mr Morrice said the April trading month in particular highlighted that the market remained unpredictable but Easter trading in March had been solid and customers were responding well to growth initiatives in categories such as footwear, sporting goods and jewellery.

Warehouse Stationery had third quarter sales of $52.2 million, up 2.2% compared to the third quarter last year and year to date sales of $148.4 million up 6.3%. On a like for like basis after adjusting for the timing effects of last year's 53rd trading week and the timing of "back to school" in particular, third quarter same store sales was up 11.2%.

Mr Morrice said "the Warehouse Stationery result was an excellent one, particularly in the present climate and further reinforced the company's view that the turn around being achieved by the business is sustainable".

Subject to any material adverse change in expected trading conditions, the Directors remain of the view that adjusted NPAT for the full year will be similar to adjusted NPAT for F09.

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