JB Hi-Fi has lifted first-half profit 5.5 per cent to $160.1 million despite volatile holiday trading for the electronics and home entertainment retailer.
Revenue for the six months to December 31 rose 4.2 per cent to $3.84 billion, with comparable sales in Australia, New Zealand and at The Good Guys – the white goods business it bought in 2016 – all going up.
Communications, games hardware, audio, fitness and connected technology drove a 3.0 per cent increase in comparable sales from JB Hi-Fi Australia, while comparable sales rose 12.6 per cent in NZ and 1.5 per cent at The Good Guys.
The retailer said on Monday it expects full-year profit to rise as much as 5.1 per cent, but struck a cautious note after comparable sales growth slowed across the board in January.
‘The company continues to see positive sales growth, however in the Christmas quarter and January there has been increased volatility and a bias in customer purchasing towards key promotional periods,’ JB Hi-Fi said in a statement.
JB Hi-Fi’s Australian online sales rose 21 per cent on the prior corresponding period to $144.4 million, meaning roughly $1 out of every $20 in sales is generated that way.
JB Hi-Fi gave full-year net profit guidance of between $237 million and $245 million, an increase of between 1.6 and 5.1 per cent.
It expects to open five JB Hi-Fi stores and two Good Guys stores in Australia over the 12-month period, while closing two JB Hi-Fi’s in Australia and one in NZ.
At 1150 AEDT, JB Hi-Fi shares were 74 cents, or 3.3 per cent, higher at $23.32 against the backdrop of a lower overall market.
The stock was outperforming a flat consumer discretionary sector.
JB HI-FI RESILIANT
* Net profit up 5.5pct to $160.1m
* Revenue up 4.2pct to $3.84b
* Interim dividend up 5.0 cents to 91.0 cents, fully franked