MYER RELEASES Q1 FIGURES AS PRESSURE FROM SOLOMON LEW MOUNTS
Written on the 1 November 2017 by David Simmons
DEPARTMENT store chain Myer has appeared to yield to demands from billionaire rag trader Solomon Lew to release its quarterly sales results ahead of its highly anticipated strategy planning day.
CEO Richard Umbers blamed the further drop on the "challenging" retail landscape and is hoping for a recovery during the latter part of the calendar year.
"Sales during Q1 FY18 reflect the continuation of challenging retail conditions characterised by heightened competition and subdued consumer sentiment," says Umbers.
"Myer remains focused on the upcoming and more significant trading periods of Spring Racing and Christmas during Q2 FY18."
These results follow the continued threats from Lew, who is Myer's biggest shareholder.
Last week, Lew declared war against the department store with a personal letter released to the ASX lamenting the chain's 'demise' and called on shareholders to vote against the reappointment of all its directors at Myer's AGM.
Lew also took aim at incoming Myer chairman Garry Hounsell for suggesting that a meeting between the two over the future of the company had not taken place as the battle for board control became personal.
"This request was taken to the Myer board by Mr Hounsell and rejected," Lew said in the statement last week.
"Mr Hounsell then inferred to the media that he was yet to meet with Mr Lew, and publically backed the "New Myer" strategy against all of the evidence that it is not working."
He also said Lew was interested in only pursuing his own interests, not those of all Myer's shareholders.
This morning the group announced it will launch a new online marketplace in a bid to extend the range of its online offering and bolster its online credentials ahead of the launch of Amazon in Australia.
The marketplace, dubbed Myer Market, will be built in partnership with platform vendor Marketplacer, and will launch once Myer is satisfied with the range on offer.
Business News Australia
Author: David Simmons