Over at the verdant one, turnover grew 12.2% to R43.2bn with profit before tax up 8.1% to R1.5bn, a result which the phlegmatic Captain Hook has described as “a solid performance, not a spectacular one.” But there were nevertheless spots of spectacularity within that: TOPS, for eg, grew sales 21.2% to R5bn, while Build it upped turnover by 17% to R7.5bn. SPAR stores were indeed more solid, ahem, with turnover up 11.5% to R53.7bn (anyone, anyone? Yes that’s right: the overall result is smaller because it reflects SPAR’s sales to those stores, not from them, clever) in a competitive environment with rattled punters. During the year, which ended in September, SPAR added 23 new stores for a total of 868 and a 3.2% increase in retail space, and upgraded 147 existing ones. By contrast, TOPS added 47 stores for a total of 538, who would have thought, and Build it added 20, for a total of 281. Another highlight of the results was the rise of the house brands, which now account for R6.2bn of wholesale turnover.
Comment: Cut the green guy some slack, they’re trading very smart with an unusual model under difficult circs.