BICYCLES CAN'T SLOW DOWN SUPERCHEAP PROFIT
1 April 2010,
SUPER Cheap Auto Group Limited (SUL) has revved up a 14.5 per cent profit jump for the December half, despite tough conditions for its bicycle retail arm.
Managing director Peter Birtles (pictured) says the underlying trends for the core business are positive, but Goldcross Cycles ran at a $3.5 million EBIT loss in the December half.
“The first thing we felt was to market the business in a similar way to BCF and Supercheap Auto, but customers have a purchasing cycle that is less frequent, it takes much longer for customer transactions,” says Birtles.
“There’s been a slowdown in customer demand for bikes with some other stores we’ve spoken to seeing a 20 per cent sales fall year-on-year, so we’ve got a lot of work to do. It’s not just a sales game, it’s a profits game.”
SUL plans to open four new BCF stores and two new Supercheap stores this half, after the two recorded 5 per cent and 8 per cent like-for-like store growth respectively in the first seven weeks of this half.
“We will still be opening stores through the second half – we’ve opened a BCF in Warrnambool in Victoria, will build another one in Adelaide in March, as well as a Supercheap store in central Queensland,” says Birtles.